h o m e........
p a s t   i s s u e s....
s u b m i s s i o n s....
l i n k s

 

 

.........
LESLIE SAINZ



...........
TO SPRINKLE WITH SACRIFICAL MEAL


The recipe calls for two sticks of unsalted butter
and six cups of unrivaled gloom. The weather forecast
calls for turtlenecks and setting your neighbor ablaze.
I am all out of sugar.

                                                *

It takes a special kind of scientist to handle a wildfire,
a certain type of man to over-season a store-bought crust.
You failed Chemistry with a prehistoric determination.
I stopped anticipating needs, and set the table for one.
I am an excellent conductor of heat.

                                                *

Remember when I taught you how to glaze the peaches?
I spoke to you in Spanish, like that movie about cooking
that didn’t even get nominated. Everything a generic
substitute for desire, I rolled my r’s like filo dough.

                                                *

These days, I swell with small victories:
I sliced my finger while cutting tomatoes, although not to the bone.
I stopped naming the onions. I cry a little less.

                                                *

In the movie, Tita is madly in love with her sister’s husband, Pedro.
When her sister dies, they make passionate love. Pedro dies
mid-orgasm, so Tita swallows a pair of matches and burns
down the family ranch. Anything can triple in volume
when you add a little heat.

 





...........

IN WHICH YOU FAIL ALL SORTS OF TESTS
 

When a naked woman, high on spice, destroys
a sandwich restaurant in Anchorage, Alaska,
you begin to wonder if everything changes
shape under the broken umbrella of night.
You run out of fabric to spill red wine on,
you chew on pens till your mouth summons
the ghost of Hermann Rorschach. His eyes,
two milk cartons searching for what, who, and why?
His once perfectly symmetrical face spoiled
rotten by Father Nature and Mother Time.
You ask about the beyond, if the unknown is more
butterfly or two fighting dogs, but he neither dillies
nor dallies. Rorschach makes an office out of your bathtub,
shows you nine pictures that all resemble your mother in drag.
On the tenth blot, he shows you a picture of your ruptured appendix.
What do you see? Who is there? Why do you say that?
If you squint, you see the graveyard shift at a Day’s Inn,
two receptionists arguing over a uniform.
Some days the socks are navy, some days the socks are black,
you say, as you pull the stopper underneath his spectral feet.
But most days, life is hard enough.


 




...........  

BIO: Leslie Sainz is an MFA candidate in poetry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is the poetry editor of Devil's Lake.






 

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