Academic journal article Women's Studies Quarterly

Ordinary Things

Academic journal article Women's Studies Quarterly

Ordinary Things

Article excerpt

Every moment is a poem if you hold it right.

-Lauren Zuniga

I'm standing in the grocery aisle holding a jar

of bargain brand roasted garlic tomato sauce.

Shamed, of course, claiming I cook, despite rarely

making my own sauce fresh anymore,

merely tinkering with bland premade & packaged

goods I find at discount. Then there's the discount,

of course, this new life differing from previous ones

overspending on organics at local health food

markets, & who was I then? Half-housewife, halfinvested

in mending a marriage with agenda foods?

The jar almost turns itself in my hand, the habitual scan

of ingredients: no added sugars, no animal products.

I've never really concerned myself with preservatives.

& then I think, perhaps that is why, in this new life,

I'm not yet pregnant but, of course, that's surely got

its own sordid causes, not the least of which being 40

& hard-lived. Everything is a guess, even this sauce.

I put the jar in the basket & head for the counter,

convinced of my failures. …

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