Saturday 24 June 2023

'Why I won’t eat watermelon since that day at summer camp' by Sally R. Simon

Because watermelons shouldn’t be slathered in Crisco and thrown in the lake for prepubescents to fight for while pimply-faced counselors stand on the shore and laugh. Because no one told me my bikini top slipped when I carried that sucker out of the water until it was too late. Because I overheard the lifeguards joking about my budding melons behind the craft tent. Because bees land and suck its juice, thinking they’re flowers. Because bee stings on the tongue hurt like a mother. Because Jimmy Johnson shot a seed from his mouth so hard it stuck to my cheek. Because I told my manager to fuck off after he pinched my ass in the workroom, and he made me slice watermelon and wrap them in plastic wrap all week instead of running the register. Because my boyfriend got me high on weed at the homecoming bonfire, and dared me to kiss dorky Dan who passed a watermelon Jolly Rancher into my mouth and made me gag. Because my ex-mother-in-law floated melon balls in the punch at my bridal shower. Because my pregnant belly reminds me of how hard I fought for that damned watermelon. Because I can still feel the grease on my chest twenty years later. Because watermelons look like the bomb but taste like sweet nothing.

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