It starts when his mother tells him he’d be happy living there. That she’s tired of making the same thing for dinner every night.
It continues how he wakes up, stringy strands of pasta curled up around his chest, his legs, and elsewhere. He likes spaghetti enough to eat his way through it for breakfast and so, that’s how he starts his day.
Later is when it gets difficult – when he can’t find his mother who is hidden now in a clump of marinara sauce. He will discover her later tonight when he mistakes her for a meatball and tries to break her apart with a fork.
He enjoys the garlic air so much that he tosses out his spice cologne and doesn’t brush his teeth. He is certain his girlfriend, Jen, will understand. He also decides not to wear any clothes as the ooze of wet spaghetti around him feels so good.
He soon begins to widen, and Jen starts coming around less and less. She is not much of a breaker-upper and tells him things like “wouldn’t you like some lasagna? It would be good to try some lasagna.” That sort of thing.
School becomes a mop of bread across the classroom floor. His guidance counselor tells him he is being suspended because of the naked thing, and anyway, what else is there to learn?
He stands on the steps of the school. He remembers from his hippocampus the aroma of pine trees, girl perfume, and cinnamon. He is starting to tire of garlic.
But he’s at that point in his life where no one but him can be right.
Nothing to do but run for mayor of Spaghettiville. That way he can make up mother rules, and girlfriend rules, and dress codes.
He only hopes he will run unopposed.
Francine Witte’s poetry and fiction have appeared in Smokelong Quarterly, Wigleaf, Mid-American Review, and Passages North. Her latest books are Dressed All Wrong for This (Blue Light Press), The Way of the Wind (AdHoc fiction), and The Theory of Flesh (Kelsay Books). She is flash fiction editor for Flash Boulevard and The South Florida Poetry Journal. Her chapbook The Cake, The Smoke, The Moon (flash fiction) was published by ELJ Editions in September, 2021. She lives in NYC.