M.J. Iuppa

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner

Mae was running late. The Clinton Crosstown bus would be at
her stop in minutes, and if she missed it, she would have to wait
under the kiosk with those sad sacks who stood too close to her.
She had to hurry, so she opened the freezer and pulled out a foil
wrapped chicken leg and left it out on the counter to thaw. All
day she dreamed of an easy skillet meal— with herbs, and a side
of rice. That evening, much to her chagrin, she unwrapped her
plump chicken leg, only to find a solid milk chocolate rabbit.

Tea Party

Nothing quite like homemade, but Maeve hadn’t lifted
a wooden spoon in months. She pushed a wild gray curl
off her forehead and leaned closer to the cookie display,
searching package labels for her heart’s desire. Through
tightly wrapped plastic, she poked the oatmeal-raisins,
just enough to see if they were tender. She smiled as
a strong whiff of cinnamon leaked out. Her mouth
watered, but snickerdoodles caught her eye. She lifted
the package and thought of Donna who loved these
more than chocolate chip. What to do? Meanwhile, at
her kitchen table, Ted E. Bear waited patiently for tea.

Wish (Want)

Whose decision was it? Mine, she thought, looking out the kitchen
window. Tulips in bloom in the back yard made her think of stolen
kisses. She could meet him at the drop of hat. Some close friends
were getting together for Sangria on tap. No one would notice her
sitting next to him—her knee touching his. Oh, excuse me, she shied
away, her hand hovering over his, slightly. He looked up; his dark
eyes gleamed like a woodland creature. They both laughed as they
passed their pitcher around. More? Why yes, she dreamed, there
will be more of this.

M.J. Iuppa is Director of the Visual and Performing Arts Minor Program and Lecturer in Creative Writing at St. John Fisher College, and is a part time lecturer in Creative Writing at The College at Brockport. Most recently, she was awarded the New York State Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Adjunct Teaching, 2017. She and her husband Peter Tonery live on a small farm where they have been practicing organic food sustainability for the past 17 years.
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