All my love to my large, diverse, crazy family
Mom bought kimchi that boils when opened
and I pour it over sticky rice with a spoon,
rice that leaves slug-trails where the bowl’s broken.
Obaasan taught my sister in June
to break an egg, corners pricking into
fingers like a puppy’s tapered teeth, mixing yolk
into hot rice. Tía taught me to stew
arroz con pollo, scents that can evoke
a sigh from Mayan gods, with tomatoes
floating like scarlet jellyfish among
the little yellow grains. These little tornadoes
of flavor from across the world are flung
across my tongue, my whirlwinds of spice—
Obaasan, Tía, Mom, me, and rice.
Obaasan is Grandmother in Japanese, and Tía is Aunt in Spanish.
family, sonnet, love