Photograph by Grace Gilbert

The First Pancake

Kate Walz
You always throw the first pancake out
That’s what my mom told me her mom told her
I’ve never done it though because, why waste perfectly good food?
She must have told me this for an important reason, she must have, she must have.
In English class they are always telling me there is something more than the words on the page,
And now I can’t help but think of everything that way.
It’s really getting to me.’
Always throw the first pancake out
I’m never quite sure if the pancake is done until I flip it over,
and by then it’s too late
But never mind that
because I think I figured out what she means, she means, she means
Or maybe she means nothing at all and my English teachers told me the story all wrong
Throw the first pancake out,
I know, I know, I’m going to!
But why throw out perfectly good food?
Holden Caulfield would tell me because it’s a phony.
Gatsby is so rich, he’ll have a whole other case in the kitchen, and won’t care unless his beloved
Daisy is there to share them with him in his large, billowing house.
He would do anything for her, you know.

Why throw it out when there are people starving in China and Africa and Charlottesville,Virginia?