I’m seven, which would have him in his sixties
and the kitchen’s crowded with too much cheese.
Tonight, no well balanced meals made by mom.
Tonight sauce is bubbling, nasal glands hungry.
I’m thirty-nine, which has him gone fifteen years,
lost in long aisles seeking the right kind of cheese.
I can not remember. Not the ingredients. Not his face.
It’s snapshots and recipes. Yet something’s hungry.
I’m twenty-three, which means he’s angry, or calm,
or can’t remember his own name, or if he is me.
I can’t ask him anymore to tell me what goes in
as you age, and what stays, or where he was
When I was thirteen, on nights we ate by the TV
and watched Hee-Haw while he was gone.
I’m lying layer onto layer, cheese and sauce,
but nothing comes out right, like this memory.
I’m close, but I can not follow. Messed up
yet somehow at peace. Wrong. But ready to eat.