Tea Time

Precarious, the delicate cups tinkle

as she set the tray down.

My aunt distributes the tea, steam

wafting up from the glasses balanced

carefully in our laps.


It is too hot to drink.


Then –

missiles buzzing

through the crowded living room –

clumps of sugar

violently plop!

into full glasses –

the lava liquid splashing!

on hands and legs.

The room bursts into squeals.


My uncle and his sons have impeccable aim.


The cries explode into peals of laughter

that fuel the angle of their cocked-back arms.

My aunt shields her face with a plate and sips –

she is a season survivor.

Soaked by the projectiles, another round of tea

is produced. My uncles and cousins ping-pong

their eyes back and forth as they plot the next trick.


There are only hours left in our trip.


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