The Maytag

by Allison Leigh Peters

I could talk your ear off all afternoon
about refrigerators. It’s true, like
what they say about strangers and flat
light and flat land: just a couple
of Midwesterners in a dingy bar, a ten-buck
tab and lipstick marks so dull on his shirt
the kiss itself was gray. As the moon
sets—but not here (somewhere in
Montana, I’ve heard)—I set
off for the lazy Susan in the kitchen,
by the refrigerator, where I keep the vodka,
rum and coffee cold. (Rule for nights: do
not mix all three; if you do, do not drink.)
You know this, too. I could tell
you of the germinating from the burlap seed
that is this Earth, but you are warm, like
a spice, like my favorite broth, cheeks rust
red. You have a face I’d like to kiss, I’ll stroke
your hair like this, we can touch like this,
tonight you are a toaster, and let me nest here.
Or whatever you want to know about
refrigerators. No one uses Freon anymore.


Allison Leigh Peters won an Academy of American Poets Prize in 2010. Her poems have appeared in Michigan Quarterly Review, Dunes Review, Burner Magazine, and elsewhere. She was awarded a National Emerging Artist Residency from the Grin City Collective in 2011 and is Founder, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of Orange Quarterly. A recent University of Michigan graduate, Allison now works at an historic Traverse City elementary school, volunteers for the National Writers Series, and teaches poetry and blogging workshops at Northwestern Michigan College.