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Fickle Muses an online journal of myth and legend


the neighborhood
by Sari Krosinsky

A Kitchen Legend
By Liz Dolan

“If you don’t lower the fire,
the bacon will burn again,” he says.
“If I don’t lower the fire,
the bacon will not burn again.”
I shake the frying pan and
dream of bronze bacon uncurled
sizzling in a sea of mercury.
Rising from the foam, Merlin
anoints my shoulders with Excalibur
which he lays into my dish pan hands.
Swaggering with the sword
lashed to my apron strings,
I protest “I am not Percival,
I have no time for boyish jaunts
after the Holy Grail,
nor for medieval miracles.”
Baby blue-eyed Merlin is no fool.
Like me he is saddened by memory
and cursed by clairvoyance.
From my chipped, blue, sea-gulled mug,
he sips Colombian coffee.
I shudder as he dips his toast
in that sepia sea and smiles.
Chastened by the whistling kettle,
I chant the Confiteor
and wet the tea leaves.
Sliding the sun-god egg
on to my liege lord’s plate
and buttering his toast with Excalibur,
I offer him the crisp, golden bacon.