The Ethnic Aisle

by Jason Winchester

when the main character

hesitates to kiss

the love interest

 

or a stack of printer paper

to hold down their taxes when

they sip ginseng tea and

complain about their neighbors.

 

 

but is the tin can of yarn

underneath the couch

meant for immigrants?

 

or tear out the carpeting 

and staple it to walls,

just to pretend that

everything is alright,

 

so when they find hope

in the ethnic aisle, they’ll

be sure to bring coupons.

 

 

or an act of cruelty,

without warning or

even sweet tea,

wondering where

did it all go wrong.

or does the

difference between

heartache and heartburn

feel the same as a pillowcase

over a stained mattress, as

a garage sale to get rid of her 

paintings is a way to maintain 

that coveted American Smile.

About the Author

Jason Winchester is a junior at Southern Oregon University, working towards his B.F.A. in Creative Writing. Jason is Asian-American, being half-Korean and white, and he lives in Tacoma, Washington.