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Handcrafting a Predictable Meatball

Anthony Bernando

“Arrivederci Roma” playing from the street like Dean was there himself,

Vendors selling fresh bread, fruits, and vegetables. 

Brooklyn, New York, 1983.


Frank Caporaso got his hair cut. 

No charge from the barbers.

They were joyful to see their homemade Italian meatball prepared,

Covered in his own red sauce and shame.


The dismal child walks home,

His empty abode filled with the lingering stench of a vodka soaked carpet.

Mama never had the money to replace it. 

Papa spilled drinks on the carpet whenever he got disoriented.  


He’s been gone for three years. 

Papa had his own world. 

It was filled with parallel figures, 

Deforming the fabric of his family.   


He was never alone, though he was never there.

Cut Frankie out like the chooch’s cut into his head,

Disappeared into a forest of voices and riches, 


Never cooking the meatball, 

No seasoning or preparing, only leaving blood and ground meat of a cow.

Meatballs are meant to be cooked and served for the world to enjoy:

Just a little pink on the inside,


Delectable and scrumptious with a little ricotta. 

So why not follow in its true footsteps alone?

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