Blood on my Hands


June 3, 2013

We always have fresh fruit and vegetables sitting out in our kitchen. They usually occupy a bowl; green stems of tomatoes peer out from the top of the heap. But sometimes when I buy too much, they spill out onto the counter, and roll across to where the coffee is. Potatoes and coffee grinds. Onion skins and spilled sugar granules.

It is our art form.

A still life of life.

And where there is ripe fruit, there are tiny flies, never more than one or two at a time, levitating above the bowl. They float across the space between the counter and the cabinets, bouncing from fruit to fruit; a variable bounty of sweetness awaits below them to explore, eat, have babies on.

I clap them.

That’s how I deal with the problem. I don’t set out a bowl of apple cider vinegar for them to fly into and then drown. Nor do I use special traps that Pinterest might suggest. No, instead I clap them dead. Unrhythmic hand claps emerge from the kitchen as I prepare food. Followed by the sounds of either my victory or defeat.


Then I wash the fly blood from my palms and return to dicing carrots.


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