after Neruda

If you open the pantry door
too fast, watch out
for the muscovado sugar,
the fine-milled flour
and ground ginger, almonds,
cinnamon sticks.
The tower could fall
with the slightest draft.

Study these treats:
peach crumble, almond tarts,
sweet paste fruit
formed with subtle flesh
and words with give.

You need a mountain of sweet,
built up slowly, over time,
so when your husband decides
he can no longer take
the trace of crumbs and butter
on your upper lip,
you can take the machinery
of your shared life apart,
piece by rough piece,

and rebuild that house
with gingercake and marzipan,
ready to eat.