My Little One | Kara Mason
She keeps a rough sack of potatoes in our entryway,
a trough disguised as dressing table,
they squat unseen there, planted in front of the mirror
where we put our mittens, where she rests her small body
on one hand to sigh, and button my purse inside my coat.
We pickle vegetables and store them in my bedroom.
Jars with swimming greens and reds line the windowsill—
still cold from the draft, we spoon them on fried “yaitsa” in the morning.
The jars she saves for the coldest winter months are window bars
that protect me from the night in our ground-floor apartment.
But it is evening, and in our bright kitchen we weigh out heaps
of sugar and flour on a scale against a pile of fifty-gram weights.
She is cutting apples, blackened with rot, sugaring them for the “pirog.”
And I am by her side if only because the oven warms the kitchen
and the night is too dark to go into.