Friday, January 16, 2015

All Five Flavors

The other day I tasted the whirr of a hummingbird for the very first time.
It nestled on the tip of my tongue the way laughter does when it sails
from a park on a Saturday afternoon and follows the arc of a doe leaping.

It was a gentler flavor than plowing dry ground black with back and blister
into something fingers can rake, though it was stronger than the sweet blush
of cheeks lighting like snowflakes on her fluttering lashes. Speaking of her,

she smiled at me once and it tasted like walking home all alone from school
in May between walnut shadows and the effervescence of a sunlight
barely able to make it through to my carrying nothing away that day.

Not too long after, I pursed my lips against the tang of chasing our old hatchback
and shouting from the bottom of my throat. Its aftertaste burned just like the bile
of running barefoot and waving goodbye to my Dad through tailpipe smoke.

Little Patuxent Review - January 2015

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