My grandmother never went in my mother's kitchen
without cleaning, washing, tightening her lips.
I don't think she liked my father.
The cold oven, the whirring can opener,
the hot dog and bologna packages
gaping in the fridge were signs.
The dirty dishes, the unfolded towels
were tea leaves, omens, entrails
to the straight-spined, black-eyed cleaner, healer.
With the sound of the water from the tap,
the various greens of the kitchen, uncovered,
she wove a spell, opened a window, scattered ghosts.