Once you get a taste

It happens when
you’re in the middle
of something

Like a meeting
or in line at the
bank or on the
toilet seat

Phone rings

You pick
it up

it’s a voice from
your past

a voice you
remember whose
timber was clear,
rising and falling
but mostly rising

Now the voice is
sluggish but still
manages to rise
to the occasion

It’s your uncle
or dad

And he says,
you know, i got
me a taste for
a cheese steak or
Fried oysters

They’d be real
good about

yeah, you say.
What’s that got to
do with me?

Don’t be chickenshit,
the voice answers

And you look at the
cellphone, you want
to flush it in the toilet or
stuff it into the ass of
an elephant

Then you think of the
cancer that he beat and
how the treatment deadened
the taste buds

and the voice says, I know,
you’re busy. It’s ok, don’t
worry about it, I don’t need

And you tell your uncle
or dad that you’ll pick up
those oysters or that
cheese steak

Just sit tight, you say

and there’s a pause
that lasts almost a

and the voice cuts
through, rising

it says:

you know,
i just got a taste


(c) 2017 Tony Robles


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