Chinese takeout was our thing –
specifically – Desi Chinese.
My dad and I almost always made sure
there was enough vinegar in the rice,
much to the chagrin of my mother.
She would tell us about how
it was just right. Of course it wasn’t.
Now she knows. Few words were spoken,
but a lot of gesticulations in the form
of gustatory head banging and
garlic sighs peppered the table.
The crunch of a still reasonably warm
spring-roll would signal that we were really
starting to dig in to our meal. My dad would
ask me, “How is it?” and I would mumble
through a garden of vegetables, “Sho good!”
In between all the soy sauce, ajinomoto,
and vinegar (of course), we were just
the three of us – enjoying a family meal.
It was our little tradition. And it smelled of home.
Shloka Shankar is a freelance writer residing in India. Her work appears in over two dozen international anthologies including publications by Paragram, Silver Birch Press, Minor Arcana Press, Harbinger Asylum, Kind of a Hurricane Press and Writing Knights Press among others. Her poems, erasures, haiku & tanka have appeared in numerous print and online journals. She is also the editor of the literary and arts journal, Sonic Boom.