Rows of kousa line the pan
and steams beneath aluminum ceilings.
Steep knee-deep in tomato sauce
known as Arabic spices.
Secret infusions stuff words back
in mouths, an apple in a roasted pig.
Nobody obtains knowledge of the sumac
the red pepper or paprika or a pinch
of something in the tomato paste
we ingest without any memories.
There is no pastiche fitting for these
squashes bursting with lamb
lean and perfect only for
this Easter Sunday.
You were a week late, he says.
You were too early, she retorts.