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This poem is taken from PN Review 185, Volume 35 Number 3, January - February 2009.

Three Poems Chris McCully


The Gravy People

Cheap cuts of meat after the war - tripe and lights
And eking out. Making do. It was almost a style.
And we were gravy people.
Without the gravy nothing was a meal.

And eking out? Making do, that was the style:
Half a pound of butter and a sewing kit.
But without gravy nothing was a meal.
After a while you made the best of it.

Half a pound of butter and a sewing kit.
You'd never think we'd won a war.
After a while you made the best of it.
There was so much you just learned to ignore.

You'd never think we'd won the war.
For years we queued for stamps to feed the ration book.
There was so much you just learned to ignore.
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