hot pot on a Wednesday, 11am
bijin nabe bubbles, spits like angry child. bowl of purple radish, small-capped mushrooms, leafy greens. if at five years old, when I prayed for you in the back of that old car, I knew what your face would look like now, clay-set lines sinking the sides of your nose, your flabby forehead, I would have prayed for much more
you fill my bowl and miss the chicken I never eat. I let you and her see the way mushroom slips and squirms down my throat, noodles dripping down my chin. maybe the mess will stop you from drawing out the map of fear you have squawked to my face my whole life
it doesn’t. clockwork demands your doomsday foresight on a well-lit cosmopolitan restaurant. but rather than bleed with anger I watch your old mouth lick bone broth clean and I remember what it was like, being five. too young then to find you never felt safe. in silence I remember to forgive you.
Andrea Gerada loves fizzy yogurt soda, fat cats, and spicy candles. When she isn't reading or dropping yet another unfinished project, she is thinking about writing something. She prefers this to actual writing.