Ian C. Williams
Call It What It Is
After I boil this carton of eggs, then I will sleep.
After the rolling boil smooths to a line, after I peel away
their shells, then I will call it what it is.
This attempt at forgiveness. But forgiveness
will not erase the kitchen. Not the house or the forest,
not the text messages or the state lines. Not what you did
or how I needed to rearrange this silverware drawer
of my chest afterwards. But I don’t know how to define it.
As it is, I’m scared. Scared that forgiveness is just a flick
of the wrist holding the knob, a motion to turn down
the gas so low it’s invisible. Only stench and suspicion—
never a full crown of flame. I promise—I won’t strike
a match in this kitchen. But I’ve seen the contents
of your pockets. I know you have enough for both of us.
About the Author
Ian C. Williams is a poet and teacher from Appalachia. He has earned a Masters in Fine Arts from Oklahoma State University, He lives in West Virginia, with his wife, Bailey, and their two sons. He tweets @ianwilliamspoet