Cooked Goose

Cooked Goose

As I face her contumely with stoic restraint,
I may seem cavalier, but really I ain’t.

I’ve grown used to her holiday gloom and depressions
when she is exposed to these family sessions.

After so many years, I’m attuned to the drill,
though I must admit that I’ve had my fill
of her bigoted grandpa, her silly vain mom,
her brother whose jokes are always a bomb.

Her sister who views our clothes with derision,
the grandmother who cannot reach a decision
on what kind of pie—pumpkin, chocolate or peach?
So she always ends up with a little of each.

Her nieces and nephews all stupid and spoiled,
and the Christmas goose that always tastes boiled.
Why do we attend each new family blast
when we always go home feeling slightly aghast?

I must say their whole group has failed at the game,
for a family should be far more than a name.
We swear every holiday will be our last,
but I fear nonetheless that our lot has been cast.

We’ll continue to dread every Christmas and Easter—
every occasion to become a feaster
on gummy plum pudding and cold slimy fowl,
for though we curse and  grumble  and growl,

for birthdays and weddings, we’ll load up the car
and drive those long miles to come from afar
repeating this ritual year after year,
for this is the family that we hold dear!



Prompt words are holiday, cavalier, stoic, contumely and passage. Fiction, folks, fiction. Written from the point of view of a long-suffering male spouse. My husband did not feel this way about my family, really.

10 thoughts on “Cooked Goose

  1. koolkosherkitchen

    Thank G-d our family gatherings were nothing like you have described, Judy, and I can’t express how much I miss them, but I’ve heard stories similar to that in your poem from many people. Such a shame!


    1. lifelessons Post author

      Mine weren’t like that. I loved our family get togethers with my aunt and uncle and cousins and grandmother, but my cousins were much older and so for most of my years at home it was must my sister and me and a number of adults..When my cousin had babies, it was special again.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. koolkosherkitchen

        I, on the contrary, am the oldest of my generation, with a bunch of cousins following, the youngest ones even younger than my son. Since among the Odessa part of the family there were three ‘dachas’ (summer houses), the rest of the cousins from other cities would be sent to stay with relatives in Odessa during the summer vacations. The gang of us ran around from one dacha to another, picking raspberries here, gooseberries there, grapes and strawberries in abundance, climbing trees and generally having lots of fun. The older cousins were responsible for the younger ones, and everybody cared for each other. No adult supervision was required.



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