The Better-Than-Sex Blueberry Cake
by Elsa Fernandez
A year ago in October,
wandering the streets of Orkney.
I was alone but not alone.
Life was changing.
Illness was walling off the past.
Facing the death of a partner,
I desperately wanted to break
the concentric circles that defined me
in the role of friend and companion.
I glanced in the window of a store,
crammed with knickknacks.
A tiny carved animal caught my eye--
a roughly carved elephant,
no more than two inches high,
painted in pastel watercolors.
I picked it up—and a fluttering
wave of happy hope
crept through my body.
Painted at the bottom of the
wood elephant were the words--
“You make my toes tingle.”
I imagined giving it to a future
lover or friend.
I have survived the changes that came my way,
meeting strangers who became friends,
one that surprised me
with a magnificent blueberry cake.
Plump purple-cobalt-blue marbles of juicy
goodness burst with every bite,
crowding a succulent pale yellow cake,
the milky warmth taste of vanilla rising
from its delicate softness,
snuggling under a faint sprinkling of powdered sugar.
My body shuddered and shifted
as I slowly ate a piece,
remembering past intimacy
and realizing with a conspicuous thump,
that I didn’t miss it.
This blueberry cake surpassed every
physical sensation in memory,
transforming a single morsel into
the biggest O that existed.
The little pachyderm taught me something.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elsa Fernandez grew up in Asia. She has lived in San Francisco since 1970 and never gets tired of this lovely city. She has travelled the world and still gets excited flying back home and to finally land at SFO. Her family is scattered around the world—India, Australia, Dubai, England, Ireland and Argentina. She is a political junkie and majored in Journalism and Political Science. She loves music and plays the piano quite well (one of her dreams was to own a piano bar in upcountry Maui . . . she would probably call it the Maui Moon!). Writing poetry is an emotional outlet for her.
Other works in this issue:
Bay Area Stew
Last Summer in Jenner
Bay Area Byways
Where Earth Meets Sky
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