Days of Red and Gold
Sittin’ at the kitchen table—cup of black coffee in one hand, cigarette in the other—I look past catches of blue paint and the remains of flies on screen door mesh, toward the sorghum field just beyond the ranch gate. Death’s stillness—a gravity all its own—has seeped into every corner, permeated the grout of tiled countertops and spaces in between fruit magnates on the old, white Frigidaire like the smell of rabbit in the oven or hints of storm riding out on the breeze. Life’s left the room—no pulse under these linoleum tiles—it seems, leaving it darker, a bit colder, despite morning’s come to call through the window above the sink. I take another sip—bitter on the tongue—then a drag (or two), finding myself—absent-minded–fingering the contents of a chipped, pink and white bowl of green stamp china (of which she was so proud). Four pennies, two dimes, and a nickel. Two rusty paper clips. A half-used packet of B&C headache powder. A dead fly. I remember eating from it—sweetened raspberries, red and golden, from bushes in the garden—when I was small. How I’d toss them back in grubby fistfuls, between chokes on the juice, as honied explosions—sour and sweet—took me to Heaven and back then ‘round, again, while she looked out the screen door, tossing hair from her eyes—cup of black coffee in one hand, cigarette in the other—staring at my father working in the field, beyond.
David Estringel is a Xicanx writer/poet with works published in literary publications, such as The Opiate, Azahares, Cephalorpress, Lahar, Poetry Ni, DREICH, Somos En Escrito, Ethel, The Milk House, Beir Bua Journal, and The Blue Nib. His first collection of poetry and short fiction Indelible Fingerprints was published April 2019, followed Blood Honey and Cold Comfort House in 2022. David has written five poetry chapbooks, Punctures, PeripherieS, Eating Pears on the Rooftop, as well as Golden Calves and Blue (coming 2023). His new book of micro poetry little punctures will be released in December 2022. Connect with David on Twitter @The_Booky_Man and his website www.davidaestringel.com.
This poem is from South Broadway Press’ new anthology,
Dwell: Poems About Home. Purchase here.