In the Flesh
You’re skinny remarks my brother after two years without seeing each other in the flesh: we live on different continents. It’s not a compliment. He’s all the childhood family I have now, parents gone in their sixties, we’re only ten years younger than them when, emaciated, they died – different cancers, the same age. I’m fitter, leaner - that’s all – but he reminds me only in my family can you be too thin. My family who couldn’t get enough of each other. We wanted more: great mounds of fleshy love you couldn't get your arms around, more years to squeeze like dense and rosy cheeks, to stuff our faces - bloat ourselves - the extravagant binge dribbling down our chin. When my father’s heart and blood stopped, then hunger for a child filled me to restore flesh like a transfusion swelling into the empty space, the impulse beyond moderation and decorum, like the impulse to feast on our plump babies exceeds moderation and decorum – craving to consume what we can’t bear to lose. This is the devour you whole kind of flesh, the chew-every- last-morsel kind, the fat left on, the sort where you can’t get your fill.
Maria Surricchio is originally from the UK and now lives near Boulder, Colorado. A life-long lover of poetry, she turned to writing in 2020 after a long marketing career. Her work has been published, and is forthcoming, in the I-70 Review and Delta Poetry Review. She has a BA in Modern Languages from Cambridge University and is currently studying at the Hudson Valley Writers Center.