Microwave

Microwave: illustration by Malek Montag, 2015

Microwave:
illustration by Malek Montag, 2015

Mother was doing that thing she did.
That thing with the rag in the sink
where she wrung and dried it with a flick.
The microwave was smelly.
Outside a car stood by the curb.
He sat inside it.

“Are you going, mum,” I said.
“Yes, dear,” she said,
as she opened the door of the microwave
and delicately placed the plate on the side.
Mother then did that thing she did.
That thing with the rag in the sink
where she wrung and dried it with a flick.
The microwave was smelly,
and the car waited
while he kept the engine running.

“Mum, he’s waiting,” I said.
“Yes, dear,” she said,
as she looked inside at the stains
and the dried on remains.
Then shut the door and did that thing she did.
That thing with the rag in the sink
where she wrung and dried it with a flick.
Yet the microwave was smelly,
and the car ticked over in the street
as patiently he waited.

“Mum!” I said.
“Yes, dear,” she said,
as she fiddled in her handbag
for house keys and lipstick and mascara,
and that scarf bought in Guadalajara
before going to do that thing she did.
That thing with the rag in the sink
where she wrung and dried it with a flick.
But the microwave was smelly
as the car stood by.
Then he tooted the horn.

“Mother!” I said.
“Yes, dear,” she said,
as she walked out the door with hesitant feet.
He climbed out to offer her his seat.
Mother sat behind the wheel and imagined
she was doing that thing she did.
That thing with the rag in the sink
where she wrung and dried it with a flick,
and cleaned a microwave that smelt.
Instead she sat in his car,
and he pointed the way.

“Good luck, mum,” I said.
“Yes, dear,” she said,
as the car drove away for a while.
When mother returned, she wore a smile
and proudly proclaimed she’d done it!
while I was doing that thing she usually did.
That thing with the rag in the sink
where she wrung and dried it with a flick.
The microwave remained in a state
as we opened a bottle to celebrate.

Malek Montag, Rochester, 2015

About malekmontag

I am a writer and a wage-slave, and proud father of George Giraffe. I live in the UK, but I exist everywhere. My first stories were published this year (2016) in Short Stories and Tall Tales (Atla Publishing). Follow me on Twitter @Malek_Montag15. My Work is also available on Niume.com.
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