Monday, July 26, 2010

The Sandwich

By Carrie Kaufman, copyright 2001

It was the sandwich that made me take the drugs.
The shmear of peanut butter
The dribble of grape jelly
The papier mache white bread left over from Thanksgiving,
The crusts cut off carefully, so he wouldn’t roll his eyes and have to do it himself, later.

The sandwich and the morning sun
Made me take the drugs.
The not-yet-seven-when-I-don’t-get-up-till-8:30 morning sun streaming in through our kitchen windows
Illuminating his face
Animating my hands
Refracting possibilities in my lover’s eyes
As I spread and cut and bagged and hummed
And thought about taking drugs.

The sandwich and the morning sun and the little boy made me take the drugs.
The sly smile I have known for six years
The compassionate heart that defies my eyes to stay dry
The large, soft hands that hold mine when he sits next to me in the car.
The boy who loves me.
The boy whom I love, perhaps more than anyone.
The boy who is not mine, though we have both pretended, from time to time.

The sandwich and the morning sun and the little boy and his mother’s imminent return, made me take the drugs.
I wanted this to last forever
Would gladly skew my day earlier
To make sandwiches for my child
To have breakfast talk with my child
To send my child off to school with a perfunctory kiss
And tear up as I watched him run through the playground to join his friends.

So I’m taking drugs.
And I’m popping eggs like they’re going out of style
I am fertile.
And carrying around cannisters that look like R2D2
With tubes of stuff that half of you will likely produce tonight. For free.
So I can get up early and talk and cry and make sandwiches in the morning sun,
Every day.

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