Of Three or Four People
Yehuda Amichai

Of three or four people at dinner
You're always sat next to the nudnik
Forced to hear about the neighbor's overgrown garden,
The uncollected trash on the hills
Lit by the soft golden stone
Paid for by the extortionate taxes
Of the municipality
Of Jerusalem.

And people who left for fifteen minutes
Come back in thirty, when dinner is cold.

Of three or four people at dinner
One always finishes his soup
But feels it's rude to ask for more.
He stares into the bowl.
Within him: hunger. For soup,
For peace, for Biblical passion
Tamely modernized. For language
Common, tasty and cozy
Like this soup
Which can no longer be ladled out

Since it has been eaten already
By you, and the main course
Still unserved.

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