By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
By Roy Edroso
By Jon Campbell
By Albert Samaha
By Zachary D. Roberts
Because of you I write bad poetry in bed. I've lain there at one in the morning thinking about your mouth and that tooth that slightly juts out when you smile. I have a gap between my two front teeth that you think shows character. You've taken photos of me eatingscooping up gumbo and swallowing oysters. Do you look at my pictures when I'm not around?
I'm trying to think of a word that rhymes with "onions." I like the way you slice them when you make dinner. You concentrate and are precise. You look so serious as you mince and dice. Someone once said you resemble Tom Cruise. I laugh because you kind of do. I imagine you sporting a tattered baseball cap that's seen more then a hundred kitchen forays; an old T-shirt you bought at Wo-Hop, a Chinese restaurant you took me to once to nurse a hangover; and an unshaven beard that I like to feel with the palm of my hand.
You feed me avocado pieces with salt and truffle oil and shake your head knowingly after each bite. "Good, right?" You're quite a sight. When you cook, you clean everythingtwiceand wear purple surgical gloves because you don't want to contaminate the food.
I like to prepare breakfast in the afternoon for you. The menu doesn't change much but you tell your friends about it as if scrambled eggs were foie gras crème brulee or filet mignon with bearnaise sauceboth of which we've shared. Latin music always fills the air. After we eat, we get to dance salsa barefoot. You hold me close and feel the rhythmic sway of our hips. Sometimes I'll wear my red patent-leather stilettos and do a solo. You watch. I toss my long dark hair around as I twirl and prance. One, two, three, four, one, two, three, four. This is my idea of romance.
I have ice cream after every meal. It's my all-time favorite so you keep your refrigerator stocked. Even when I've had enough and can't eat you offer that as dessert and I cave. I keep coming back for more. You see me at your door. New York Super Fudge Crunch, Half Baked, Chocolate Chip Cookie Doughthose are some of our flavors. We make do with one spoon and eat out of the carton. I take the moment and savor.
Remember last spring when we went to that place at One Little West 12th? We devoured small burgers and monkfish medallions. At one point I excused myself and went to the restroom. When I returned, I sat on your lap and we made out. I could taste the Stoli Vanil and orange juice cocktails we had been sipping that night. They were like creamsicles you crave on a warm day, much like your lips, which I first kissed a year ago come May.
Once, at a vineyard in Long Island, you surprised me with three tiny chocolates; another time you drove from Montauk with a lobster roll in tow for me; a few weeks ago you made me a mini-tray of lasagna with lots of mushrooms, sausages, and beef and three different cheeses; and lately you pack Cajun chicken sandwiches for the both of us to have come lunchtime.
I didn't get a sandwich today. I missed it.