“Most cynics are really crushed romantics: they’ve been hurt, they’re sensitive, and their cynicism is a shell that’s protecting this tiny, dear part in them that’s still alive.”
– Jeff Bridges

I’ve read it’s best to microwave
to soften flesh and rind.
But I prefer to roll by hand
to squeeze, and press, and grind.

It’s only when I bruise the skin
mistreat you thoroughly —
that you release your oil and blood
surrendering to me.

Beneath the shell protecting you
your juice runs sweet and tart
but reaching it means cutting deep —
a skill that is an art.

Yet there the seed waits all the while
and dreams of its own life —
my only way of reaching it
is with my paring knife.

So when it comes to your thick skin,
perhaps it is unwise,
since I, for one, delight in hands
perfumed with your demise.

Photo by v2osk on Unsplash

Sara Lynn Eastler

Sara Lynn Eastler is a writer living in Midcoast Maine where she dutifully serves her feline overlord and a flock of treat-loving chickens. She is trained as a biochemist and is currently an MFA student at Queens University. Her recent work can be found in Stanza and Cathexis Northwest Press.