Cooking is a Devotion

Cooking is a devotion.  I don’t know how my life
got this way.  Except finding the correct lid
to the boiling meat sauce.  That is important.
Begrudging my family because they can lounge
while I sweat about the steam.
I want to sit.  My thighs are lit up
as if colored inside by a mad child.  I want to speak to someone
but I will tell everyone at parties that I love this.   What I love
is making potions and finding essences and oils
and extracts reduced to a tonic and
Salt baths.  Spells.  Smudges. And red algae sheet masks.
I love wine, and too much makes me rage.
I say I am committed to writing. But nothing torments me more.
I am inspired, and despondent once inspiration dies out.
So what is that?  A careless lover.
I am a lover, for the newness and also
the world-renowned security.  That if you leave wishes
in a shoebox and vision boards on the mirror
they will bump
up against you.  Leave deposits of yearning
And return with a shisito pepper singe.
I learned to be devoted from my mom
But she hated cooking and sliced small fruits in one hand
Using her fleshy thumb as a surface against
Which to slide the blade
Because to invest in a cutting board would have meant surrender
We sang her praises at spaghetti dinners
It was magnificent and made with, not love,
But a commitment to keeping us alive
A nightly doing, while we lounged in the living room,
I writing, Terrance singing, Trey watching, my dad another