food, language, myth, relationships

ex nihilo

when i couldn’t speak
she drew me a circle
there were no words to communicate
the shape i didn’t understand
but her circle did not close
and it turned outward on itself
and i was sad to see it
stop.
she called it “spiral”
and i begged for her to complete it
until it reached the ends of the paper
and continued on to the table
and pooled onto the floor,
heavy like honey.
she pointed to pasta and said it again
she held up a loaf of bread and smiled
and the word spread across the face
of a warm round slice
like butter.
then to dessert and moved her mouth
as if to kiss
and motioned towards dessert and said “swirl”
to the red and yellow
giving spiral a surname
an “S” alias whisper with an “L” for a tail
that taps the roof with her tongue
and runs down the slick back of teeth
like a secret.
i learn her language
and the shapes move out to where
i can no longer see the edge of her world.

~ Andrea E. Janda

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