Assembly line.
Assembly line.

Flour dusted across wooden cutting boards,

A plastic bin with freshly kneaded dough

Sits on the edge of the table, cradling

A knife ready to cut the rolled strips

Into thick buttons.

The girl pulls out the rolling pin,

A thick wooden dowel with no grips,

Grabbing the dough by its love handles,

Spins it in place while rolling forward,

Not backward, Flipping, repeating.

The man watches, filling the flattened

Disks with flattened potato,

Large hands folding clumsily

While small hands push limberly.

Thus they work as a line,

The tall being in sandals with

Buckles painted on the straps,

Next to the diligent girl with

The hair so long it draped down

To touch her dusty toes.

Oils simmer, smoking, filling the

House more than the mother and

The father combined with their vice,

Cast iron skillet teetering precariously

On an uneven range.

Visitors step in through the open door,

Marveling at the man’s skill

With less delicate affairs,

Enjoying the results of the work,

Happily chatting over cups of

Hot water and sugar cubes.

The hot pouches cool and are stored

For the next day’s meal,

The souls disperse and return

To monotonous routines of old,

Waiting again, separated by

Wrinkled walls, for their next

Little joy.

Composed 07/05/2012

Author’s Note: One of the few times my host family trusted me to cook with them. Once they saw I wasn’t clueless, they decided to let me in on meal preparation more often. This mainly involved me just handing them stuff, but I suppose I had to work my way up.

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