Allium, Peeling Onions
Poem by Linda Hepner
Peeling onions with my naked nails
Oh how close I come to paring off my parchment skin
And on it I shall write: if all else fails
This you shall send to those I’ve harbored, allies, foe and kin:
Come here and read, my cold and heedless peers,
That I, constrained by expectations, image, hunger, need,
Have found beneath the skin a well of tears
And with serrated slicing into stinging flesh I’ve freed
The piercing fragrance live between each petal,
Layered bodies, one upon the other, sinew, bone,
Bleached by salt and sweat to pearly metal;
The bulby victim yields and each cut screams, no more, atone!
Until upon my maple board I Leah
Slice and chop and say my weeping is the blinding sun
That pierces through the glass like a betrayer
Waiting for my soup and sauces, sweeter once I’ve done.
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