Empty Shells in Vinegar
Grandmother reaches for a strainer
and clams are soaked in salt water.
She says, Grandfather’s throat
remains in the oven after his cremation.
I steep the empty shells in vinegar.
It slowly eats through
the gray surfaces. They are like ghosts
under the fluorescence.
She asks, Can you sleep with Grandfather’s bones?
I pierce a hole in a shell with a needle.
Grandmother dresses the spinach
with sesame seeds and sweet soy sauce.
Lime juice drips on grilled mackerel
after she puts it on a plate.
She always wears a stained green apron
like a uniform for this life.
She says, Are you making shell earrings?
In the late evening,
after she washes her face,
a meteor shower falls from the sky.
Some shells rattle;