The Onion In My Pantry

Kyle Brandt-Lubart

It’s winter
No longer or more abrasive than it usually is

Every morning begs me to suspend my disbelief in bad omens
And every morning I politely decline

Every morning I put on the same leaden shoes
Sometimes I tie the laces too tight on purpose
I seek perfunctory sustenance
I lose track of time

I buy produce and accidentally let it rot
Those onions have already been in the pantry for too long


I wish I could muster the energy to be distraught about something
If I could perhaps I would clean out my pantry
Buying a whole bag of onions was stupid

It presupposes that nourishment is on the agenda


An aggressive dust has settled over the kitchen
I lackadaisically trace my name in the residue
It’s a necessary anchor

I usually try not to look into the pantry
Because it reminds me of unfinished business
But today something catches my eye

Gently out of place
A verdant sprig bursts forth
The unassuming bulb from which it originates
Is bathed in humility
And something akin to subtle defiance

I awake the next morning
And bask in my willingness to remember
That there is a cyclical nature to most things

Kyle Brandt-Lubart is a poet, visual artist, and Licensed Clinical Social Worker from Brooklyn, New York who resides in St. Louis, Missouri. Brandt-Lubart works full-time providing free therapy services to uninsured and underinsured individuals living with mental illness. She earned her MSW from Washington University in St. Louis and was a St. Louis Regional Arts Commission Community Arts Training Institute Fellow from 2017-2018. She was selected as a Dear Butte writer-in-residence for Fall 2021. Her visual art has been featured in galleries across St. Louis and in the Yale University publication The Perch.