My Poetry - Buttermilk at Room Temp
Buttermilk at Room Temp
I taste it with memory’s mouth;
warm liquid velvet
makes a sour mustache.
Push it through my teeth;
warm milk on my gums
feels like lowering into a bath.
Relax my little-boy jaw;
sticky rivulets down my neck,
running stream back into time
to sticky tickly in my infant-ears.
Once I was one of 36 sturdy wooden desks.
The blackboards were really black.
By mid-morning the room was tropical.
A tall large-faced fan
watched us from the corner.
The humming hot air
was hypnotic because
I was hungry, really hungry.
A muscular man in dark green work clothes;
his gloves delivered a square meshed
wire basket of milk cartons,
I dozed and dreamt of the sweating cartons
and could think of nothing else
save that one would soon be mine.
So when the time finally came round again,
I who nursed only at school
remember that the milk was room temp,
thick like abundant and rich;
because I was hungry, really hungry.