She found them all again on Facebook,
the robber bride.
Sultry, we remember her, devious,
not one who cooked but rather
boiled spaghetti with butter then smoked herself thin,
spending it all on fabulous clothes.
She could be many women, each different.
Now it’s all history.
She’s a TV chef now,
with four lovely daughters, each
singing, dancing or playing themselves
into and through the life blood of a number
of unsuspecting young men.
Just like their lovely mother, who stole
one from each of us back then.
Turning from hippy to socialist,
activist to academic,
to suit the occasion. And now
finding them one by one.
Welcoming them each, separately,
each special one, into her home
weilding a cleaver and slicing
the chicken from the bone
adding a little lemon grass and spices, some
fruits, hand picked, purveyed
from Mayfair to the
semi-detached in middle England, extended into
a dreaming attic. There hangs
a pungent smell of herbs to season this reunion as
paring knife in delicate veined hand she
slices keenly through tendon and nerve, this
meat on tender hooks. They’re each
glazed with desire still after all these years,
unable to resist the siren call.
Drawn. Each lonely one to her again.
They’d offer her their hearts and love but paring,
paring and smiling, she sees only separation and new combinations.
Nutritionist of nightmare,
sweetbreads and souls are her desire
as delicately, she dices with their deaths, they
appear unaware, confused and dazzled
drawn in as ever
even as it was
those thirty years ago. For good cooks,
nothing is lost.
From online space and time warp she’d been
hunting him out on
through airwaves and webspaces.
Delicately, casually, mentioning, their memories.
He didn’t want to respond
to the welcoming offer to be her friend again
but was assured she’d now be harmless,
given the experience of age.
And here amidst preservatives, there is no ageing
only the intermingling
of spice and pain
delight and promise, seduction
and destruction. Perhaps,
she would like to be otherwise but compelled to smile and laugh
perform the domestic goddess she’s
unable to resist and so once more the
flirting will turn
to filleting. Fine poised now, see how she offers
the beaded glass with bubbles at its brim the
I never asked for the slow cooker
The complex planning of it the long term
Investment in suitable vegetables, the slow
Slow browning, the way throughout your day
While you’re away it will ceaselessly blend
Herbs and unguents, spices and oils turning
The rawest and toughest of meat to soft
And tasty suppers, well hung, well marinated
Well seasoned, well cooked.
But after the end of the affair its long
Slow cooking its brief coming to some resemblance
Of a boil its final slicing
Dicing, its testing of tendon and sinew its
Souring and suppurating the sense of
Being boiled alive slowly in oil
The slow cooker
Now has its moment.
How perfect the last supper, how
Idyllic yet saddened, poignant those final moves
Knowing he was going forever, yet he’d agreed
Shamefacedly, guilty somewhat, escape in his eyes, to come for dinner.
Now that the last
Memory had been dredged up, drained and strung out to dry
Let me invite my dear friends, each recovering
From being pared to the bone from
Being put through the mincer each
Starving for the payback
And so, moving on as we must I invite them
To see smell and taste how well this slow cooker
Reduces and reconstitutes even the
Broken edge the torn ligaments the
butchered sensibilities the essential guts
Of this destroyed relationship. There will be plenty
To take away but for now
See, taste and savour how revenge
Is no longer a dish