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Down on My Knees
Ginger Andrews


cleaning out my refrigerator
and thinking about writing a religious poem
that somehow combines feeling sorry for myself
with ordinary praise, when my nephew stumbles in for coffee
to wash down what looks like a hangover
and get rid of what he calls hot dog water breath.
I wasn’t going to bake the cake 

now cooling on the counter, but I found a dozen eggs tipped
sideways in their carton behind a leftover Thanksgiving Jell-O dish. 
There’s something therapeutic about baking a devil’s food cake, 
whipping up that buttercream frosting, 
knowing your sisters will drop by and say Lord yes 
they’d love just a little piece. 

Everybody suffers, wants to run away, 
is broke after Christmas, stayed up too late 
to make it to church Sunday morning. Everybody should 

drink coffee with their nephews, 
eat chocolate cake with their sisters, be thankful
 and happy enough under a warm and unexpected January sun.

From An Honest Answer (Story Line Press, 1999)
Used with the author’s permission.


Ginger Andrews is an award-winning poet from North Bend, Oregon, who cleans houses with her sisters when she’s not writing poetry. Author of two books that have garnered praise from critics as well as common folk, Ginger’s accounts of everyday activities can be found in a wide range of literary journals and anthologies 



Post New Comment:
Everybody should be thankful and happy enough--yes, happy enough. How true.
Posted 04/21/2015 04:47 PM
I love this poem. I want to be friends with the author. I want to buy the book.
Posted 04/21/2015 10:12 AM
Wilda Morris:
"Under a warm and unexpected January sun" or under on unexpected cold and windy April day.
Posted 04/21/2015 08:31 AM
Larry Schug:
Good advice contained in a good poem. I really liked the ending.
Posted 04/21/2015 08:06 AM
Posted 04/21/2015 07:16 AM

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