breakfast (flash fiction)

Something was different. They looked like eggs. They tasted like eggs. The bowl of grits looked like an ordinary bowl of grits. The toast was plain toast like many other pieces of plain toast.

And yet, after the fork touched the food, before reaching the mouth, the color of breakfast shifted, like the shadow from a cloud passing over the eggs.  A pasty hue.  A ropey taste that wafted and then concentrated toward the glands.  An anxiety. Nerves in the upper chest, rising into the neck.eggs

It was the calmity of death. Sitting, heavy, on the fork.

“What’s the matter?”


“I didn’t say anything.”

“I’m not mad at you.”

“You’re acting like it.”

“I’m not!”

“There. See?”

“Stop talking.  Nobody asked you to come here.”

“It’s that space in your heart. You still can’t fill it.”

“I know.”

“You need to.”

“That’s my business.”

“That’s too much salt.”

“Leave me alone.”

One egg was enough.  No grits.  Only half a piece of toast.


things that block light
trees mostly
absorb me
like soft butter
on hot toast

the heat
takes a minute
comes inside
crawls in the gut

a hunger
for something out there
something that’s missing

a thirst
between summer sky
and dry dirt
on which
I barely can walk