Local Delicacy
William Winfield Wright

You are supposed to order
seagull eggs, and in Rome they eat
the insides of lots of animals.
Who doesn’t have an uncle with a story
about angry waiters and ketchup in France?
Of course you put the fish under
running water.
Lye is scary stuff.

I don’t like flan. Please don’t
order the flan, and don’t kiss me
if you do. “I’ll have the flan”
[and then she puts her hand to my face
and says, “There’s chocolate in my purse.”]

In one version of that memory
we are at the airport and we start
kissing and kissing, tasting
our mouths over and over,
and we miss the plane to who knows,
and after the initial interest everyone
goes back to what they were doing.

It’s a town you live in.
I am just visiting, but I know
this is what I want,
to be at your mouth with my mouth,
the chairs all pushed aside,
the planes coming and going in the summer light,
to be here with you and in the memory of you,
to think of our arms as a kind of restaurant
where we can order something from off the menu,
the local delicacy.

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