It was a type of augury, our playing with our food,
though Daddy said to stop it and Mom said it was rude.
Surprises in spaghetti, discovered loop by loop—
the future written out in words within our alphabet soup.
Mashed potatoes were our crystal balls. They told us what we’d be
stirring them around our plates to see what we could see.
We flattened peas with tines of forks and piled them in towers
and when they fell, we saw if they foretold our future powers.
When Grandma saw us doing it, she’d rap us on the fingers
with a colossal soup spoon. The memory still lingers.
And yet I still play with my food—a type of edible rune.
I like it more these days since I’ve outlived the ominous spoon!