If only she’d look at me. I know she’s on the other side of the plate, but it’s almost as if she doesn’t remember. As if she’s purposely ignoring me. Using the spoon between us an excuse. It wasn’t even that long ago either. On the draining board. My prongs wrapped around her blade. Her blade nestled in between my prongs. Our handles resting against each other. Stainless steel on stainless steel. The water and suds draining off us slowly.
And now look at her. All the way over there. So far away. As if I’m not here. As if our embrace meant nothing when it did, it really did. I felt it. And she must’ve too. Fork and knife together as they were meant to be, not separated by plates or dividers in a cutlery tray.
She couldn’t have forgotten. She couldn’t. Unless she was made to forget, the other knives telling her to. That it was hopeless, pointless. Sure we work together, but working’s not the same as living. The fork has his section of the tray, the knife has hers, and only an untidy human mixes. Or a lazy one, one that doesn’t believe in order.
If only I could touch her again, though, even for a short time. Then she’d remember, I’m sure she would. I don’t care what the other forks say. We’re a perfect fit. We’re not meant to be together only when we’re on a plate, after a meal, food drying on us, or on the draining board, suds dripping off us. Why the separation? Who decided that?
Humans. We didn’t. It was humans and their arbitrary ways keeping us apart, stopping us from understanding each other, feeling each other, touching each other.
Right. Okay. This is good. The food’s here now. I can see her and she can see me. Remember me. Remember me. Remember the draining board. Not all knives are alike. And neither are all forks. It’s her. I know it is. The light scarring on her blade. I’d remember it anywhere as surely as she’d remember my bent left prong. The others told me to worry about that. That the humans would throw me away, but what do they know? I’m still here, being used, like I am right now.
God, I hate this part. That one finger pushing at the base of my prongs, those clammy fingers and that clammy thumb pushing into my handle. It’s disgusting, vile, the whole thing so unclean, covered in bacteria. And then the food. What is it tonight? Eggs. Brilliant. And I bet he’ll leave me out once he’s done, too. I know this human. Left me on the plate once for days, the gooey meat drying to me and the plate. He didn’t even wash me properly the next time.
That’s it. I’m sure that’s where it started. Where I lost the respect of all the others, back in the drawer, the tray, my prongs still caked with dried cheese. I’d never have been laughed at about her if I hadn’t had to endure that until that human with longer hair and glasses came along and scraped me clean.
God, I can feel the oil on me and the saliva, the slobber. Why does he have to bite down so hard, grind me against his teeth, loll his tongue all over my prongs? I shouldn’t even be touching it. Lips. That’s all I should touch, then come away clean so I can see her and she can see me and we can be together again and see ourselves reflecting in each other. Even on this plate, resting together in drying yolk – anything – would be better than being in that human’s mouth then back in the drawer with those sneering forks.
But no. Anything wouldn’t be better. Only being with her would be perfect. Even if we are in yolk, it wouldn’t bother me because we’d be together, away from the drawer and its borders, its dividers and constraints.
Look at me! Please look at me. Don’t you remember who I am, the draining board, the water and suds dripping off your blade and on to my prongs? Come on! Touch us together. Help her remember. Go to the bacon over there. Use me to pierce the meat, the fat, hold it, then bring her down beside me and rub her serrated edge across my prongs and cut.
Yes. That’s it. Do you see now? Do you remember? Don’t worry. I’ll be back. It’s just a short trip to his mouth. No? I’m covered in yolk. I could be any fork. But don’t you remember the draining board? We’re meant to be together. Who cares if we’re now sitting in oil and grease and fat and baked bean juice. He’s finished and we’re together. I remember the scaring on your blade, the way the tip has a barely noticeable bend in it.
God, why couldn’t he have locked us together instead of this, the base of our handles apart, spread-eagled, our heads – prong and blade – almost touching, but not quite. It’s torture. Pure torture. And she doesn’t remember. Not when we’re like this. I know she doesn’t. That touch in the bacon before was not enough. I felt the spark but she didn’t. She’s never been put back in the drawer caked in cheese. Or maybe she has. Maybe she believes everything the other knives say. Maybe she wants to fit in, despite her longing for me – is she longing for me?
That’s it. We’re touching. We’re flying. To the sink no doubt, but we’re almost there. The draining board. She must remember now. Feel that water over us. That lovely soap. He must’ve been told. Instructed not to leave us here for days, thank God. I couldn’t’ve coped. Her so close and yet so unattainable, her serrated edge facing me, her memory so close to being revived. It would be worse than being with the spoons.
Here we are now. Can you feel it? The draining board. I know you can. Okay, you’re between two different prongs, but you must remember, you must. The spark, the water, the soap, the suds gently dripping off us.
But what’s this? What’s he doing? Oh, this is good. Warm. Can you feel it? You must. Together in this cloth. This human never uses a cloth. Our handles! Rolling against each other! My prongs! Your blade! This is even better than before. It’s not dark, or wet or oily or dry, but yes, yes, it’s good. Yes.
No. Don’t do that. Don’t open the drawer. Don’t separate us. Be untidy. Keep us together. It’s meant to be. No. Put us back in there. I don’t want to feel your fingers again. I want to feel her. No. Don’t put me with the forks. Anywhere but there. Be messy. Be your normal self. Don’t listen to anyone else.
Wait! Where is she? I can’t see her. No! Don’t put her there. No! Not with the spoons. Are you mad? She’s meant to be with me. Even with the other forks. The knives. But not the spoons. Please no. Not the spoons.
- Missing In Action (thewishfactor.wordpress.com)
- New Cutlery Laws (Inspired By Pastor Schaap’s Wednesday Night Sermon) (szabatinperuadventures.wordpress.com)
- Knives forks and spoons wall art (conradhough1.typepad.com)