In the hard-baked soil of the north,
everything that didn’t die from the heat
grew bright green scales or leathered hides
we learned to peel and dice and boil for
everyday sustenance. Each harbored a spongy
core, some secret cache of moisture underneath
a stubborn outer fibre— dried handfuls
of fish, stiff husks from the banana’s
heart softening in their own syrups
as they shed their purple skins.
We swirled our spoons in their slimy wake,
grateful for salt and the bland canvas
of boiled rice. The more we ate, the more
we learned of luck and its simple rations.