10-Line Tuesday

January 10, 2017

ordinary sweetness
for B.

Somewhere in Minnesota, a dying woman is asking - inconceivably -
for caramel popcorn. The doctors could pull out all the stops if she let them, but this
is how she'd prefer to enter the next great mystery, and who could blame her?
I am picturing a sticky cluster at the edge of her pale fingers,
the smooth, quiet passage through her lips, and a long pause when molasses
finds her tongue. No matter what I do, I won't be able
to hold that moment still. Eventually, an old instinct will bear down;
glaze and kernel will disappear. A child will bear the loss she knew was coming. And yet,
when she least expects it, a memory will meet her in the aisles, a gift of ordinary sweetness,
and all of the darkness in the world will not keep her from seeing that light.