Household Fires

In the eighties, a frying pan filled with grease, flaming on stovetop

thrust under faucet, blaze to the ceiling

In the nineties, a broken toaster

butter knife wedged in its release mechanism, cheap solution to a broken spring

the beeping alarm for five minutes before anyone noticed, thick grey smoke cloud hovering, full conflagration off the bread

In the aughties, a can of tomato sauce forgotten inside the oven, kept there for storage

boiling as an easter bird cooked at 350 degrees fahrenheit, preheated

until the sauce became molten, liquid jet fuel, cracking open a hole at the can’s bottom

hit the oven door, denting the interior metal on its way out, flew into the air, spun like a catherine wheel, greek fire spraying across the kitchen

Now it’s the teens

Jarett Kobek is a California based writer. His most recent book, ATTA, was published in 2011 by Semiotext(e).