Welcome, my most esteemed guest
to this humble patchwork of
bent walls, carved and painted
supports, and felt so recently
worn by spring sands that it
resembles pitch but steams far less.
Sit. Sit. Sit!
Not on the left, nor on the right,
but up here next to the first
table and the set of wood and
plastic stools for other guests,
none as esteemed as yourself,
onto the coarse springs draped
in camel wool and expensive dyes.
Eat. Eat. Eat!
I killed the animal just this morning,
butchering it with expert care,
my wife, diligent as always, using
fresh well water to clean the
foul as some call it, and my son
took the pelt so that my mother
might winterize another coat.
Drink. Drink. Drink!
Everything from the animals,
who ingest the purest forms of
the land, must be taken in and
deeply so, for their medicinal
values are unmatched and their
symbolic return in the morning
from flung spoons across
discarded jaw bones and teeth.
My most esteemed guest,
these are commands, not requests,
and you will soon learn how
to properly conduct yourself
and entertain us hosts as you
adjust to this more compact life.
Perhaps you will even gain
the social graces enough to
walk in without disruption
before you must leave this land.
Author’s Note: I always wonder how Monoglians look at foreigners and their habits, in regards to etiquette. It’s a tricky cultural minefield to navigate, and as the visitor, you’re never quite sure when and how you should assert yourself at first. Visiting new homes is always a learning experience, to say the least.