I walked to the grocery store the other day
For a bag of jumbo avocados.
I took them home and mashed them
Into guacamole for a birthday party.
I added lime juice,
Red onions – diced,
And tomatoes — the kind that tastes more like a vegetable than a fruit.
I added garlic salt,
I tasted it every step of the way.
I sat down at a table among friends.
We ate the finest homemade macaroni and cheese.
We slurped up sweet zoodles,
And whole heaps of cheap wine.
At one point a baby raccoon wandered into the yard.
We told stories on a small pink stage.
We made s’mores with peanut butter cups.
We sat until the embers burned
And the partygoers left.
We smoked cigarettes and talked about shame
And the limitations of our power.
We reconciled differences,
And laughed with each other.
We looked at stars
And fathomed at their deaths.
When the night ended I went inside
With a ball of fear heavy in my chest.
I found the lovers hugging in the kitchen.
I did dishes until the ball disappeared.
The guacamole was gone
But for the hardened, discolored remains
In the bowl.
I put my hand under the hot water
And let it run.
A voice in my head said something about a global water crisis.
I turned the faucet off and stood there alone.
I looked out the window into the yard,
Where the puppy had dropped another baby raccoon
Dead in the grass.
I thought about masks falling off,
And the smell of nag champa.
I thought about the desert,
And vision quests,
I thought about how some things turn bad
Faster than avocados
And how the things worth staying for
Are often taken for granted.
I looked at my reflection
And saw the abandoned house next door.
I saw the bushes rustle
And the shadows dance
I saw among the darkness something like a home.
I fell asleep at dawn with my headphones in
And my heart threatening to burst wide open.