There was that time we baked bread
on New Year’s Eve, while everyone else
slammed tequila shots and shot pool
across the green felt, balls plocking
into leather pockets, shrieks
of drunken joy. We sipped cabernet
seated at the kitchen island, waiting
for dough to double, then brushed
fingertips as we divided it
into two rounds, brushed hips
as we pressed our rounds
into baking pans, the dough
springing back against our palms.
How is it I’m still here, watching
your casket lowered into earth,
the handfuls of dirt tossed on top?
Just a few months ago we threw
confetti, kissed in the coming year,
pulled those tins from oven heat.
We tipped browned rounds onto cool
marble, dipped salty wedges
into sugared fig preserves, then
fed them to each other, our tongues
aroused by salt on sweet.
Linda Jackson Collins has been writing and editing in the Sacramento community for over 10 years. She is a five-time editor of the Sacramento Poetry Center’s journal, Tule Review, and participates in various writing groups and workshops. Her collection, Painting Trees, published by Random Lane Press, won the Gold Medal in poetry from Northern California Publishers and Authors (NCPA) in its 2019 contest. In addition, she has had individual poems published in numerous literary journals. Learn more at http://www.ljcreviews.com