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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 8: June 2021
Poem: 131 words
By Penelope Moffet


We could eat as much 
as we wanted—not 
on the job but afterward. 
It wasn’t stealing, it was free. 
The idea was that before long 
we’d be sick of the crisp chicken 
in its coat of grease. 
And it worked—at first 
I took home buckets-full 
but later I could barely stand 
to look at all those plumped-up 
breasts and legs, the French fries 
and the onion rings. 

Mostly I was at the front 
ringing up the orders, 
counting change. Sometimes 
I helped in back 
pushing bird-bits into bags. 
When the dining room was empty 
Fred sent me out in my short skirt 
to wipe the tables, 
sweep the floor. 
My legs were good 
for business, Fred said. 
Sometimes a lone male 
came in then to ask for wings.


Penelope Moffet’s
Issue 8, June 2021

most recent chapbook is It Isn’t That They Mean to Kill You (Arroyo Seco Press, 2018). Her poems have been published in Natural Bridge, Permafrost, Pearl, The Rise Up Review, The Sow’s Ear Poetry Review, The Ekphrastic Review, Verse-Virtual, The Missouri Review, and other literary journals, as well as in a number of anthologies. She lives in Southern California.

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