Cold Drinks and Self-Destruction: “At Home One November”

For those who are familiar with the work of Zoe Ritter, a 5th year student in Clark’s GIS program, it is clear that she has the unique literary faculty needed to artfully convey various conditions of woe. Exploring anything from cold drinks to rotting teeth, Ritter exposes the causal connection between self-destruction and the decomposition of external relationships in her poem “At Home One November.”

At Home One November

by Zoe Ritter

At home one November Thanksgiving day I

read the paper drink cold coffee and wait for food and

eat and eat at the table my

mother asks if my pinkie is a Coke finger I respond I prefer Cherry Pepsi and go

out and leave without saying thanks or thank you to have Cherry Kool Aid and sex and worry

about her alone in the kitchen with the silverware

about me sitting at her table so deaf and dumb

how I left to get numb to make my body gory

with all that blow rubbed into my gum

garden cavernous mouth I want to think it’s beautiful

isn’t it? my dead

cemetery of teeth rotting my mouthful of slaughter

-ed brain cells but I think of her instead

waiting on the couch watching the infomercials alone on mute

sitting waiting for me sipping silently in the empty house dark a glass of water

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