Stone Soup Servings is a regular series for Oddball Magazine that features upcoming performers at Stone Soup Poetry, the long-running spoken word venue in the Boston area that has recently partnered with Oddball Magazine. Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m.

On August 18, we welcome back Martin Willitts, Jr. and Linda Griggs, who were the first ever subjects of our Stone Soup Servings column last year. Enjoy their work today on Oddball today and in person next week.


Knowing Less about Love

Sometimes we know less of love than we did before.
Love never makes sense when you are in it,
any more than it makes sense when you are without it.
It has a way of sneaking up on you when you are not looking.
It departs the same way.

There were ancient gods who felt loved
and when people abandoned them they felt forgotten.
If they could not make sense out of love, what chance do we have?
If they could not force someone to love them,
what makes us think we can do the same?

People have written books on the subject.
If stacked back to back they would circumference the world.
And still we do not understand love, cannot command love.
Memorizing every page does not make love any easier
or helps loss feel any less. Love is complicated that way.

I have no advice on the matter, or empirical words of wisdom,
nor firm grip on understanding. I have loved and been unloved,
and every time I know less and less, love falling out of my hands.
I cannot tell you how to love more or how to keep it in your house.
I only know when it’s exceptional, and when silence is about.

If you expected an answer, I am the wrong guy.
For each person there is this longing to belong.
Sometimes love makes sense when you are in it.
In fact, everything, every feeling, intensifies.
Sometimes it is draining and filling like tidal waves.

–Martin Willitts, Jr.


Preserving Time

Ring-a-ding ding!
The pot and the collander
clang together after the scrubbing.

On the long kitchen table, washed clean:
cutting board, knife, bowl for cut beans,
and bag for “edibles only” stand.

This is the day we work, and
work thoughtfully, carefully, fast
as we wash, sort, and cut.

Green Kentucky Wonder pole beans
sit in a mound, waiting to be touched,
while heirloom peppers are chopped and bagged.

After the blanching, freezing, drying, packing,
we stack boxes and bags in a freezer,
wash the blancher and all we used,

preparing for a cold winter and a heavy snow.

–Linda Griggs