MN (11-08-1970 / )

Penny Candies

Let's search for money!
Couch cushions...
laundry room...
junk drawers...

Between the five of us kids
we found about 12 cents.
No food in the house.
Buy dinner with 12 cents?
We have to.

Aha! Penny Candy!
Yeah, we can buy 12
and split them.

Back then the fruit flavored tootsie rolls
were only a penny (thank God) .
We bundled up, since it was wintertime
in Michigan
and walked to the candy store.
We didn't eat them until we were back home.
That way we could just sit and savor our meal.
That was the most delicious candy
I had ever tasted.

I didn't chew them as they're meant to be eaten.
I just placed it in my mouth
and let it melt
as slowly as possible.
No talking...
I didn't want to waste a second of
this pleasure.
When SHE returns from the bar
she'll wonder (or maybe she won't)
if we ate.
I'm not telling her we ate candy for dinner.

25 years later, I went to visit HER.
Trying to move on
forget the past (it's for the best) .
As soon as I walk into her house...
sitting on the dining room table
is a punchbowl filled
with fruit flavored tootsie rolls.

I didn't mention our ''meal''
25 years earlier.
I wondered if she knew
and this was some cruel joke
to have such a huge bowl
filled with just the thing that would trigger
so many emotions.

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Comments (7)

wow, you've come a long way, I suspect, and I somehow doubt your children resort to candy dinners with a mom like you to guide them. Those last few lines are killers; really add punch to it.
Reminiscence is an important part of life. Writing it into a poem reveals things about you and it deals with conflicts. Another great one, Mary Best H
A very heartrending poem, the hurt child is always with us.
This is lovely Mary, But don't worry about that bowl, just think that you're slimming anyway. Some things are best not mentioned, we all have to keep some things secret, and why not. Great write, I loved this story although I know it's true, and has a bit of sadness in it too. Love Ernestine XXX
Hopefully the bowl was a way to communicate she couldn't do verbally. This is an excellent poem Mary. Profound. Rusty
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