• Julie Bolitho

macadamia nut steamers

At fifteen

we sat in church


and felt guilty

about the sex


We wouldn’t


the sermons—

we would feel

each other’s hands

for movements and sweat—

meters to distinguish

if there was anguish

or lavish disconnection

from Jesus Christ—

the Savior of all things adolescent.

In the winters

we would escape

through congregation


and women

and find ourselves


by ice

floating from the sky.

In nylons

I would shiver

and you would drive

me away

to a place

where you bought me

macadamia nut


I hated macadamia nuts,

but you were eighteen

and I fifteen

and “macadamia nut steamers”

sounded mature

and good

to young ears.

I grew

to love the drink

because I knew it

was for the Saturday


the Sunday


the love I knew

you felt. You wanted

to warm me when Christ was gone

and compassion was lost in Sunday sermons

and Saturday nights turned

to Monday mornings.

©Julie Bolitho. “macadamia nut steamers,” Poem. Standing on the Cast Iron Shore and Other Poems. Leaf Books Press: 2008, p. 83.

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