Fast Fiction

Koan #17: Bias — by Irena Praitis

You cannot swim for new horizons until you have
courage to lose sight of the shore
. — William Faulkner

Like so many things, they are adjustable. But since I first guided them into parallel grooves, and unloaded groceries on them, I’ve never moved them—Easier to shift the milk, the leftovers of chicken and rice, the asparagus stalks in water, the food that enters, and stays, then goes, than to pull out shelves and rearrange them. They catch the spills, and gel the smears from partially crushed strawberries seeping from the carton, cluster the bits of cracked, papered onion skins. Despite the chill and changing foods and tastes, my fad diets and late night ice cream binges, the shelves remain, unmoved, firm as convictions.
Irena Praitis
Irena Praitis’s fifth collection of poems, The Last Stone in the Circle, is forthcoming from Red Mountain Press. She is a professor of creative writing and literature at California State University, Fullerton and lives in Fullerton with her son, Ishaan.