Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Kitchen At Night (as opposed to the light)

The Kitchen At Night (as opposed to the light)
Adora Svitak

I have a habit of staying up late, and I have a worse habit of eating late. At night the kitchen is forlorn and dark and desolate, like a beach after all the swimmers and sunbathers leave, but littered with small treasures here and there—and the stars in the sky are sometimes visible from the windows.

In the morning, the kitchen is busy with the hum of a worn-out dishwasher cleaning worn-out dishes, and a soymilk-maker, a novelty of sorts, chugging away with a “vroom-vroom” usually reserved for blenders.
My mother moves to and fro in an overstated hurry, stacking dishes with clattering thumps in the cupboard, gathering spoons and forks and knives and dumping them, without sentimentality, into the silverware drawer. Light shines through the windows on a sunny day; the rain patters up against them on a bad one.

In contrast, the kitchen at night is empty, unoccupied, like a museum after closing hours or a city street after curfew, though our house has not the dignified grandeur of a museum, nor the steady rhythm of the street.
In its solitariness, the room is peaceful and serene, no noises but my own footsteps treading light across the floor. It is restful and quiet—for there is no mid-morning hustle and bustle at 10:00 at night.

At night, the kitchen does not endure too many a visitor. It has guardsmen to keep you out—Fear and Hostility, and the frightening illusions of creeping shadows in the blackness. The black lamp in the adjoining room is transformed into some malevolent magic creature.

And yet—call me illogical—I love the kitchen, late at night.


  1. Wonderful writing! This gave me chills.

  2. Anonymous6:27 PM

    Nice work! I would love to write like that.

  3. Anonymous2:55 PM

    What college did u go 2?