The Allegory of the Pizzas by Lisa Richter

There were two pizzas, and we ate
neither of them because they were delivered
to the wrong address. For days we could dream
of nothing else, no matter what we stuffed
our faces with. Each pizza would have come
with its own carefully chosen toppings:
on yours, Thai chicken and crushed rose petal,
ground into a paste; on mine, picket fences
and the footprints of baby shoes.
Oh, we had other meals, ordered in
because suddenly order took on a new
importance. We took down all our books
then re-shelved them all by texture.
More than once, we declared
each other out of order and in contempt
of the court of private opinion.
Eventually, our plants had to water us.
I made a slipknot of your hunger,
slid it over my wrist. You turned mine
into a sail and resented me when the wind
puffed it over the lake. What we desired
could not fit into flat cardboard boxes.
No crust in the world could support it.

 

Lisa Richter is the author of two books of poetry, Closer to Where We Began (Tightrope Books, 2017) and Nautilus and Bone (Frontenac House, 2020), which won the National Jewish Book Award for Poetry and was longlisted for the Raymond Souster Award. She lives in Toronto, Canada.

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