for David (since he wrote most of it)
First, he posts the recipe for Black-Eyed Peas. A slow-cooked recipe with ham. Corn bread made by a boy. Makes the whole house warm. Then he writes of the new furnace. He has taken to admiring it in the cathedral of his basement. Laying hands on the ductwork. Tracing the lines through the house. He adjusts his glasses. To be sure of his vision. Closes his eyes and moves his lips. Some rooms lack return lines (thus making the heat a little less efficient). Some paths don’t return. Some pipes disappear into darkness. He imagines the winter. Tying foot-long red ribbons to each antique grate. Throwing the switch. His bare hand on the cold duct imagine it too hot to touch. His legs carry him through the house watching ribbons blow in the future. Each a prayer flag. Fluttering. Urgently. In the breeze which smells so strongly of black beans. Ham. A loaf of corn bread made by a boy. The warmth of being, after waiting so long, at home.