True colours

by Sharon Ashton

They come to see her new kitchen;

walls of Wintry Morning Mist skirted

by Icicle White; cupboards in Damascus Steel.

So on trend, they say, for this urban lifestyle.

They do not open the cupboards

and she does not offer, but when they’ve gone

she taps each glossy armoured door

to reveal the treasures stored inside: 

 love apples steeped in sweet-basil oil, 

 cherries suspended in rosy syrup,

wild plums pierced and bathed in wine 

 and chillies crushed into pastes 

 that will stain lips the shade of Penelope’s, 

 bitten and kissed after twenty years.