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A Winter Afternoon
Adelaide Shaw

The kitchen at dusk. A soft bubbling from the pot on the back burner. An old man at the table. His full stomach keeps the chair several inches away. A merry face. Pink with a full white mustache. On his equally pink bald head is a black knit cap.

He pours dark red wine made from his own grapes, sips, smacks his lips. Now a glass for me, much smaller, watered down, befitting my size. I copy him, dip a chunk of stale bread in my wine. It dissolves in my mouth to nothing. Tangy juices spurt down my throat and my chin. The old man, my grandfather, wipes my dribbles with his handkerchief. I am five years old.

steam covered windows-
a snow carrying wind
rattles the back gate