by Colette Parris
First, eschew the juicer.
Squeeze the lemons with bare hands
let the brightness coat your fingers
and burn through
your many abrasions
watch the steady rivulets
pummel the indifferent mason jar.
Next, add water – not tap
spring for the swanky kind
that comes in tinted bottles
and smells like a ski town
you’ve never been to;
hard purity that further tightens
your already aching throat.
Then, pour in the sweetness
no half-hearted dribbles of simple syrup
no tearing of substitute pastel packets
act like you’re from the South (which you are
toss in spoonful after spoonful
of pure white sand
until there can be no doubt.
Do not wait for ice.
Raise the rim
to your furiously parted lips
invite an overwhelming
the momentary seizure
and tell yourself that this too
Colette Parris is a Caribbean-American attorney who returned to her literary roots during the pandemic. Her work can be found in Streetlight Magazine, Vestal Review, Lunch Ticket, Burningword Literary Journal, Thin Air Magazine, Cleaver Magazine (forthcoming) and elsewhere. Her fiction is currently nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Best Microfiction 2022. She lives in Westchester County, New York. Find her on Twitter @colettepjd.