“The Kitchen Poem” in the Summer 2015 Issue of Dirty Chai

This spring I was delighted to learn that “The Kitchen Poem” had found a home at Dirty Chai Magazine. I missed the issue when it came out, so here it is now. Here’s a PDF download of the Summer 2015 Issue of Dirty Chai.

And since it’s more 90 days since it appeared there, here’s a reprint:

The Kitchen Poem
for Adrienne Rich

A kitchen is where a woman belongs sometimes
not because I should cook for you

but because here when one sits at the table
with a bowl of something one realizes
what it is to slow down

Because here there is always food
and yet I can go hungry

Because there is a smell of things cooking,
and the smell is good.

Because I can spread tablecloths
and be unmolested.

Because God loves a kitchen
and I feel powerful here.

Because a kitchen is where civilization began.

Because some men are shy of the kitchen
and those men I can do without.

Because kitchens come in many shapes and sizes.

Because Allen Ginsberg never wrote a poem about a kitchen.

Because in a kitchen, a woman can take what has been
                                             and remember it.

Because in a kitchen we put things together
that have been cut apart
and call it food.

3 Replies to ““The Kitchen Poem” in the Summer 2015 Issue of Dirty Chai”

  1. I’m reading this on Thanksgiving Eve. Thank you for sharing. Your words fill me with a good feeling, and I am not particularly a kitchen person. Funny how hand and mind work sometimes afford creative space that might be renamed play. Ha ha. I bought a new potato peeler today and I can’t wait to use it!

    1. I’m glad the poem spoke to you! I think most women have mixed feelings about kitchens. I wrote this poem more than 20 years ago while I was sitting in the tiny kitchen of my very first apartment. The space and equipment needed to cook healthy, delicious meals can be easy to take for granted, especially when most of us work full time and come home tired in the evenings. Seeing work as play does seem to be the key to happiness, doesn’t it? And Happy Thanksgiving.

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