I need something as I stand before the shelf in the mass market book store.
These tomes are too shiny; they are too new. Don't even smell like books yet.
On the covers are depictions of new age recipes, each one seems to be sprinkled
with goats' cheese or drizzled with some mottled, red puree.
These are "cuisine," nothing like we used to make. I don't see ricotta anywhere,
unless it's been "clarified," a process I've always found mystifying.
I need something, I'm looking for something. A book that smells
like the basil pressed inadvertently between its pages. And when I turn them,
I need to wipe the flour from my fingertips, or let it mingle inevitably
with the contents of the new bag as I rip the paper.
I need to remember something as I pay for the book and try out the recipes.
I buy all these catalogs of memories, and I flip through them on repeat,
hoping I see one that will stir something in me, one I will buy for good.
And I will rip the pages from there, and stroke them as I eat the product
of their instructions. It's been too long since I tasted you or touched you,
so my tongue and the pads of my thumbs will be confused and electrified.