Making Coffee

by Anna Meister

Every morning it’s hard. This part 
makes me think of India, cardamom 
cracked. I grind the beans, grind my teeth 
down to nothing, wait. Sometimes 
it takes so long. When day old, flush 
down the toilet. Mud or lightning
bugs. So much stronger when he makes it. Hot 
water on a cold March morning. Single 
origin. Not your Folgers 
or whatever. I couldn’t stomach 
for years. I’m still not old enough, she says. 
These days, I’m forgetting everything. & my dad 
stopped drinking. Oh! I guess I should’ve 
turned it on. I treasure this routine, 
even if it’s bad. The oils, the rumbling! 
My dad says addiction, says something
to watch. Take it off just before. So much 
stronger that way. Measure carefully. Yes,
with the side of the knife. I realize
I’m going to be late. Unrecognizable.
You want three (or five) tablespoons. 
I bring the cup to bed. Always, 
the whole thing. Stir. This is called 
blooming. How much is 
enough? Take the small machine 
apart. You must find something wooden. 
Bottomless. Now I understand
& begin to float, becoming useful.

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