It’s so brave of you to be here

by Sam Herschel Wein

she whispers loudly to my mom.
It’s my reading. It’s my hometown.
She’s my Rabbi’s wife.
It’s so brave of you to be here,
I say to my blanket
as it tucks me in to bed.
And then my bike said, you’re brave
to be here
riding off this cliff.
The chicken is brave for boiling
itself through the night, becoming soup.
The bowl is bravely
piping hot,
serving the family.
The family is brave, sitting all down
to dinner, together, begging
for an eruption.
I braved
the blasts from my parents, writing
stories that they felt
didn’t represent them
The tiny Jewish community I’m from
bravely considers themselves
inside our windows, under the soup
spoon, part
of our family table.
The brevity of their judgments,
how they whisper so loud
I hear it at podiums, on billboards,
in the great outer space.
You’re the bravest chicken
I’ve ever eaten
, I say to the soup
at the family dinner. And we laugh,
pass empty bowls, say Mom,
it’s delicious, you’ve done it again

Sam Herschel Wein (he/they) is a lollygagging plum of a poet who specializes in perpetual frolicking. They are an MFA candidate in poetry at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Their third chapbook, Butt Stuff Flower Bush, is forthcoming from Porkbelly Press. He co-founded and edits the poetry journal, Underblong. Recent work can be found in Split Lip Magazine, Waxwing Mag, and Shenandoah, among others. Gaze at their beautiful website at