by Steven Chapman

Desensitization & Appreciation


His elbows were spread wide,
Forming sharp angles.
While he shoveled the food
In heaping spoonfuls,
Quickly into his hungry mouth.

There was no flavor
That he could say for sure
Distinctly stood out.
But it was fresh and warm
And his freedom made it delicious.

He could not remember
The last time he’d gotten
A meal that was not served
In a noisy cafeteria line,
And eaten in a hurry.

Getting so used to
Seeing items stolen from trays,
That mealtime still felt like
A ticking bomb of the possibility
Of death in a fight for food.

It took months to get back
The use of his taste buds.
As the smell of home cooking
Filled the house day to night
Where he stayed with his aunt.

The only one willing to take him in
After he served five of the ten
Years, but that’s another story.
What he realized though,
Was the desensitization.

Life turned around slowly,
And he’d liked the new pace.
It was at his aunts house
That his senses came back first,
In the smell, look, and taste of food.

The big difference now was that,
Incarcerations fears no longer
Encapsulated his living.
Changing that and much more
Into appreciation, love, and other things.

Ria 2016