dinner on the counter
thrift store later??
I come home to her loopy cursive letters on the door, mentally preparing myself for the frozen
pre-cut vegetables and the takeout box of cold rice I end up seeing on the counter. I empty the
box into a glass bowl, stuffing it into our barely functioning microwave that has to be pried open
with the “grandfather spoon”. The warped brass spoon is one of the many compulsive purchases
Mom made at the thrift store when it was on the verge of closure. Now the bent utensil clutters
our drawers with the rest of its long lineage— a reminder of how discounts, odd family
heirlooms, and gently-used signs can break a family.
(I deserve to thrive
but for now: I’ll survive)
I have nothing left to share-
save spare daughters who don’t belong here.
My sons (golden, radiant)
are now counted as easy slaughter.
I remain, my future clear
(in this sense: there’s nothing left to fear)
I will remain brave to the grave
even as a displaced slave.
Lauren Elise Fisher is a stage manager and writer based out of Bridgeport, CT. She holds a B.A. in theatre studies from the University of Connecticut where she studied stage management, performance, and puppetry. Her most recent publication, "Moving Forward" may be found in CultureCult's Spring Offensive anthology (April, 2023). Keep up with Lauren on Instagram and Twitter: @AllFishSwim.