White Bread

We faced off like soldiers

across the kitchen table,

my eyes hard, fingers curled

into fists, the white bread

a pitted battle ground

to which I refused to yield.

We had been fighting

for weeks the little differences

lurking for years within us

a swelling tension which burst

the moment I accidentally

ate that bagel

you were saving for breakfast.

Leading you cook

the mammoth dinner

a few hours later

out of spite.

I forced down your pasta,

the overflowing mounds

piled so high

against one side

of the plate

that the sauce ran over,

streaking the white china

blood red.

I choked down the green beans

lined in thick overcoats

stiff and straight across the platter.

I even surrendered to the meatballs,

heavy things that threatened

to tear holes in my stomach,

which swelled dangerously

under your arsenal.

But that bread,

given only to me

in your childish rage,

I would not relent to.

Instead, I sat

quiet and unmoving

at the table, unwilling

to obey your commanding

hisses or grinding taunts

But aren't you hungry

aren't you always hungry

I didn't waver as you

threatened to take my tv

or my precious books,

and when your fingers

grasped the plane

of my jaw, yanking it open,

trying to force that

white flag down my throat,

I spat it back at you,

my eyes burning with

tears, twin flames

silently screaming the words

I dare not say.

To this, I will not surrender.