My Cousin Angela Keeps It Safe
by Lynda La Rocca
Now you have the candy dish, lime green, Previous Honorable MentionNext Honorable Mention
its handle a chipped-glass, burgundy rose.
Always on the end table when our parents drove
from Jersey to the city, Grandma’s, Thompson Street,
each Sunday, homemade macaroni,
gravy (here they call it “sauce”), meatballs,
roasted peppers, crusty bread from Lafayette Street.
Grown-ups in the kitchen,
drinking anisette and whiskey,
us out in the living room,
pushing each other off the rocking chair
to sit closest to the candy dish.
Carefully, quietly, one of us would raise
that splintered handle
and sneak sour balls and chocolates.
When they caught us, we got yelled at,
“Can’t you wait? It’s almost ready.”
Sometimes my dad, yours,
would smack us on our butts, not hard.
And then they’d grab a candy, grin, wink,
go back to the kitchen, and we knew
that it was worth it,
knew next Sunday we’d be
sneaking treats once more.
I hope you fill that candy dish
with sour balls and chocolates,
put it where the kids will find it
while you’re making Sunday dinner,
have a drink for me,
and let them think
they’re all getting away with something big.
About the Author:
Lynda La Rocca is a poet and freelance writer who lives in Salida, Colorado.