the leeks smelled like springtime

as i sliced them into rings

and slid them into the puddle

of butter in the saucepan

to make magic with the onions.

sometimes i picture you

at your stove, occupied

with a bubbling pot, pausing

for a taste and a thought

before reaching for more

chili powder, more pepper,

more of that secret ingredient

that only you can identify

once it marries with the

sauce and spices. but then

i’ve never seen your stove,

so it is actually mine i see you

standing before, rummaging through

my spice cabinet in pursuit

of that one essential vial

that has of course been

pushed all the way to the back;

the garlic powder and nutmeg

will fall out any second now

and crash down to the counter.

you will jump and i will laugh

and say “don’t worry, i always

do that too” (which is true).

in the present tense, i reach

into the cabinet for the dill,

and another heady whiff of spring

rises from the pot as the herb

meets the leeks and cream.

is it too much to wonder if,

somewhere in the world, you

are standing in front of your

own stove, stirring up dreams?