June 04, 1991|By Eileen Shields Fisher

My kitchen smells of fresh bread and

daughters, warm and hopeful, believing

all is still possible. I

nibble from a bowl of seedless black

marinating olives (balsamic vinegar

the secret). Daughters, like measured


of suffering, should be given only

to those who can withstand the


I am frightened by their

soft sturdiness. I

may not be up

to daughters.

The train whistle seeps into the house

from the middle of town, where no one

lives. Warning:

Someone is Going to Find Out

I have this and

They Will Come to Steal

it away.

I ask my daughter if she wants peach

raspberry jelly. She

replies, "Both."

This poem won first place in the John P. Barthel Memorial Poetry Competition at Western Maryland College, where Fisher is enrolled in the master's degree program in liberal arts.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.