The water is hot & well-oiled,
your wide hand dropping salt.
When we eat, we watch the melting
butter pat on your noodles. I like
to think quiet moments like this
make me a better listener.
You tell me you joined a gym today
& I make my face into a smile.
I tell you the doctor still says
she can’t find what’s wrong &
you make a frown & eat a meatball.
You don’t know how to talk
about illness & sometimes
I forget you have a body.
I’d love to measure my body
only by my body & your body
by yours, but neither of us are flexible,
& besides, the bread in the oven
is burning. We move to a table outside
where there is plenty to look at
behind each other’s shoulders.
I tell you I don’t know how
to mourn my body & celebrate
yours at the same time so we break
out the wine, toast to something.

Pasta Night Without Diagnosis by Chrissy Martin

Photo used under CC.