Once upon a time a blood orange decided to
run away, and rolled itself
across the other blood oranges until it fell in with
navel oranges, where I promptly
grabbed it, brought it home
expecting to make fresh-squeezed orange juice.
Serena (my daughter) had a cold and I was going to
make her something to get healthy.
As I loaded up the juicer, a deep red
kicked out the top, and spattered the plastic
end, spurting into my daughter's
juice, resting on top like a blood clot.
Unbeknownst to me, one half still left
in my hand, I looked to my left
crystallizing in my head what just happened.
Exorbitantly colored, a garnet jeweled in my fist,
the stain slipping across my hand and she was tired (my daughter), had
all day, and I was
tired of being a good mom
that always did things for her
and as I opened the door to her room
Serena said, mom, what's wrong with
that orange . . . and before my head can
explain, my tongue
a horrible thing: this is
what happens to blood oranges,
explained how at the factory they
squirt these special medical
oranges full of cow's blood, to
make good little girls get better, and I
explained that she had to drink it.