The average

Beth’s mom made cashew cheese

Alisa shared her buckwheat cookies

Laundry’s done, fresh, and folded

Toilet’s sparkling, no drop astray

All the way to the store at night

Getting glue for that project’s due

Still pulling out a casserole for dinner

Serving up mango pie, special desert

Party platter with organic wine

Home-baked goodies for the kiddies

Celebrating the dog’s birthday

Giving mighty thanks to all in life

Mom of the month gave some tips

Quick oats, meal prep, health videos


Everyone’s a multi-tasking queen

Those yoga women the talk of town

And I eat ice cream from the tub

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Woman at work

It was a lonely little corner
she’d taken it up as her own
crouching low, perched on edge
on a tall-backed cushion chair
as if she’d forgotten for good
how good it was sitting back
intensely black her eyes
as a bird atop a peeling birch
darting from stitch to stitch
as though following a fish
unperturbed by them rustling
winter winds wailing without
cozy and carefree she snuggled
swiftly shifting her grip instead
keeping up steady progress
lips parting in occasional smile
chuckling at jokes only she saw
much like the readers around
cherishing the magic that unfurled
the old woman knitted in the library

Coming back to you

Like a raging alcoholic I’ve come back to you.
maybe it’s a mistake, yes. But,
I thought, just this once
if I try one more time
perhaps you will give me what I so yearn
never give up they told me
when I was young and immature
skipping around school in a swirling skirt
dream all you can and you’ll be great
oh, what bull shit, throw it in a crate
some might say it’s not the right thing
not for me, and not for you
but I’ve come back for you
like a helplessly scared child
following her mother’s heels
despite being cast away
ignored and wanted no more
you were all I could think of
on every great stage I went
people think I’ve moved on
to higher places, shinier things
I’ve got a studio in New York city
grand deluxe with a double-sized bed
It’s more than I need, of course
but isn’t even half of what I wanted
I’ve got wardrobes filled with sequins
studded dresses, party skirts, and smarty pants
everything to make anyone happy
alas, anyone but me
I know we’re no longer the same
but, oh, how much it’d mean
to hold you in my arms, cradle your spine,
to read you through mine eyes,
sitting in the porch, wine by the side
glasses over my eyes, and a pencil in my hand
let’s do this, my dear first draft
it’s time you come out of the cupboard

Confusion infused

Ouch!

I jerked awake, surprised and irritated at the same time. A blinding light pierced my eyelids forcing me to look away, and only then did I realise that the comforting darkness had disappeared from our room. It was dawn, perhaps.

I felt another sharp jab in my ribs before I saw the cause. My cousins around me mirrored m uncertainty. Two large plump fingers reached out and grabbed three of us by the neck.

Oh, dear.

I’d dreamt of this moment, I won’t lie. For months shut up in that room, I’ve wondered what the outside looked like, and each day the plump fingers came, I wished to go along. I was disappointed every time. Until now.

Now, however, I was anxious. Are all three of us going, I wondered. What if they threw me back in, casting me away with the rest of my family? Oh, the shame of rejection. I can’t bear to face my cousins again.

But I needn’t have worried. The fingers took all three of us, and before we could absorb our surroundings, dropped us into a large glass jug.

Everything was so massive. I now saw that the fingers were attached to a big red arm and a round body. A speck of dark hair rested on a what looked like an inverted pot, stiff handles for ears.

I turned to the other side. From my place in the jug, I faced brown tables spread across the room. More round bodies with potheads. Some were big, some small. There was even one clutching something fluffy to its chest. A few sat while most stood, holding cups or bottles and fiddling with flashy cards between their fingers.

I couldn’t see much clearly. They were all mouthing at each other. I heard nothing, of course, but apparently they did and understood too.

I still couldn’t comprehend my place in this situation. What was this place? The moment I was picked, I knew I was about to fulfil my destiny—whatever that was. All along I’d dreamt of getting out of the box, but only now did it dawn on me that I’d never imagined what I’d do once I got out. Perhaps deep down, I never saw beyond the inside of that dank room.

Just then, the familiar red arm approached our jug. I opened my mouth, ready to ask what it all meant. Before I could utter anything, though, boiling steam hit my eye and water crushed my lungs siphoning the air out of me.

Uuuuuhhh

I inhaled in panic, and I felt myself rise towards the jug’s rim. I hadn’t seen this coming. Then again, I hadn’t seen anything. Beside me, my silent cousins were struggling too. We’d never spoken before, but just then, our eyes locked for a fleeting moment before I saw their colours vanish. They descended, swaying as they sunk to the bottom.

It was too much. I had no air left, and my organs were weighing me down. They felt heavier than I ever thought they could. My breath rasped as the world spun. My heart was telling me to give up. My brain already had.

And so I let go of my limp body, floating away with the water’s steam. The wind was pulling me further from the jug, but I managed a last glance before being swept away. As the arm fished our bodies from the jug, I saw what we’d left behind: a reddish concoction with a tinge of mint. And I understood. Perhaps that was my destiny—refreshing the sore.

Rider

He paused at the sidewalk
letting passers by pass
he’d play by the rules
wait for the signals
though no van was in sight
one foot on the ground
another fiddling the pedal
just a few seconds more
assuring himself he stood
the system took its time
before it gave the green
and off he went a sailing
though dedicated pathway
for those pedallers as he
he rode by crooked trees
old, bent, and dying to die
their barks stripped bare
their roots gone barren
recalling as he flew past
plush, browning blooms
from a month or two afore
vanished in a slice of time
not even shadows remained
yet unstopping on he went
seeking his ultimate destination
going through a mangled maze
waving at the greying florist
settled beside a fading future
smiling at her dimpled smile
what great love for life she had!
the town centre came by next
and he barely squeezed through
high-heeled boots, long leather jackets
classy wristwatches and poor diets
oof—coming to a screeching halt
catching his breath at another signal
so much was going on all around
buying and selling and exchanging
trading, wading, and sneaking about
puffing, blowing, messing it all up
for each their own way of living
and he rode on through his