Photo: "Meat Man," Emily Sharp
Lyn Lifshin
My Mother Wants Lambchops,
Steaks, Lobster, Roast Beef

     something to get
     her teeth in.
     Forget the shakes
     cancer patients
     are supposed to
     choose, forget
     tapioca pudding
     vanilla ice,
     she wants what
     is full of blood,
     something to
     chew to get
     the red color
     out of, something
     she can attack
     fiercely. My
     mother, who never
     was namby pamby,
     never held her
     tongue, never
     didn't attack
     or answer back,
     worry about
     angering or hurt-
     ing anybody but
     said what she
     felt and wouldn't
     walk any tight-
     rope, refuses the
     pale and delicate
     for what's blood,
     what she can
     chew, even spit
     out if she