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  • Rachel Welcher

Hot Chocolate for the Apocalypse

Hot Chocolate for the Apocalypse

The fennel is brittle now,
anticipating an early October frost.

I wash my hands in a hundred winters
as I clean out our 1920s porcelain sink
to the rumble of the furnace waking up.

This is the season of bedsheet costumes,
peanut brittle, and shorter days.

As it grows colder, our backyard possum
grows bolder, stealing the cat’s food at dusk.

I buy enough powdered hot chocolate
for the Apocalypse, and search for a new
new flannel robe at Walmart.

Everything grows quieter in the winter.

I grow quieter.
I would rather
read than write,
listen than speak,
reap than sow,
and this is how I know

that it is time to prepare my soul for hibernation

from striving, contriving,
and planting seeds.
The human heart needs
seasons to break up the longing,
and the work of life, and remind us
that sometimes our only job is
to sit still beside a flickering fire.

Cover image by Rachael Gorjestani


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