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Every kitchen on the move

By Claire Trévien

For Kara Chin

Eventually, all kitchens blur as one,
connected by a countertop that shifts
from wipe down white to speckles,
from solid slabs of oak to now this,
false concrete poured under your hands
as you look out of a window
that shifts to a different marble of walls and rooftops and skies.

Always the kettle. A mug slides from one kitchen
to another, impossibly intact, remembers your lips
as the lights from one kitchen turn on,
turn off, or flicker.

The door is open, the door is closed, the door has been
eased off its hinges and thrown into the tip,
it leads to your bedroom, a corridor, an exit.

Always the internal timer, before your housemate,
leery or bored, emerges from his or her bedroom,
you slide the pizza in a practiced swipe from oven to plate,
sneak back to your room with your precious cargo
to sit in front of your laptop.


You know your body cannot take this choreography
much longer, needs to be slow-cooked. The microwave pings
in several cities at once, the microwave pings in rooms
that are here and not here, and the tap goes on and off.
On and off. On and off. On and off. On and off.

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