Dora likes to watch the hands of women
work kitchen tools
as they prepare food for supper.

She tells herself
which illness each foodstuff cures
as it is added to the pot.

One woman spreads butter
on bread slices—
thin veils of yellow over deep tan.

Another woman mixes sugar, butter and vanilla
into milk to make icing for a cake
cooling on a wire rack.

All of this for the boy whose vulgar mouth
earned him a face-slap yesterday.
But he turns twelve today.

copyright © 2023 Kenneth P. Gurney

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