Kitchen Witchery

All day she had been confined within a mundane prison of paper shuffling, her mystical powers suppressed by The Man. The instant he released her, she flew back to her lair, cackling giddily to herself, buzzing at the thought of unlimited possibilities. A wild rainstorm erupted before she reached her front door, but the smell of the wind and the pelting rain only intoxicated her further.

Blowing into her kitchen, she pulled out a bright steel bowl from its nest in the cupboard before setting it swiftly on the scarred wooden counter with one hand, her other hand seeking out a worn, leather bound volume from a shelf overhead. She opened this well-loved tome and sifted through the stained, ingredient spotted pages, listening as they teased and redirected her fingers—elusive as a will-o’-the-wisp. Ah! She grasped onto a recipe as it floated past and stayed the pages’ movement.

Dry goods and perfumed spices from foreign lands called to her from the pantry while the creamy milk, the mellow butter, and the brown speckled eggs reminded her in muffled tones of their roost in the refrigerator. She glided easily back and forth from pantry to counter to refrigerator to oven and back to the counter without a misstep. This was her domain, and everything in it obeyed her command.

Humming a ditty about lizard legs and owl wings, she set to measuring. The shhhhh of sugar crystals cascading onto the softened swell of butter in the bowl whispered that the discovered recipe held unfathomable secrets. As she creamed the sugar and butter, her eyes swallowed the list of ingredients to follow, and she deftly added a thimbleful of vanilla—a sensuous scent that undulated lazily in the air— chased by eggs with daffodil-yellow yolks. Milk leapt into the bowl eagerly—its muted splash a foggy sound.

She ground cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon with a stone mortar and pestle. As the seeds crumbled under her endeavors, they emitted a sharp pungency pursued by a bright afterglow—a pyrotechnic smell. The spices, flour, and leaveners joined the rest of the ingredients in the bowl, and she stirred the aromatic dough tenderly, coaxing it into a pan before placing it in the hot oven.

While she returned the chaotic space to its former order, she caught sight of her face in the shiny belly of a copper pan. A smudge of flour blessed her forehead like a charm against hunger, and she smiled.

*****

Originally, this was for an assignment, meant to showcase synesthesia as a writing device. I, uh, didn’t quite capture the synesthesia, but I still like how the piece turned out so you get to read it. 😉

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