Osso and Buco

31st March 2006

From this week’s New Yorker Magazine, the poem “Sixtieth Birthday Dinner” by Michael Ryan:

If in the men’s room of our favorite restaurant
while blissfully pissing riserva spumante
I punch the wall because I am so old,
I promise not to punch too carelessly.

Our friend Franco cooks all night and day
to transform blood and bones to osso buco.
He shouldn’t have to clean them off his wall
or worry that a customer gone cuckoo

has mashed his knuckles like a slugger
whose steroid dosage needs a little tweaking.
My life with you has been beyond beyond
and there’s nothing beyond it I’m seeking.

I just don’t want to leave it, and I am
with every silken bite of tiramisu.
I wouldn’t mind being dead
if I could still be with you.