Bonnie Naradzay
Red Onion


Left to ripen underground, it secretly builds transparent striations

of  skin upon skin, each silky-thin, then swells to a purple-red globe,

bulging, tinged with brown, packed tight in the papery casing, caked

with dirt, a fringe of dried root underneath, but clean inside, a tincture

that clings to the knife, stings eyes, sinks into fingers.   Unlike the lotus,

the onion cannot unfold;  no, one must slice  through the dripping pink

nacreous heart of it.  Then it’s a metaphor, as in:  there are too many layers

to peel back, to heal,  for our relationship to survive; it must end.

In AA they believe that separating the onion reveals the layers of truth

within.  On this level of the onion, I am crying.