Household by Sharon Chiquitero

The New Jersey apartment is a walk-through of rooms. Domino® At the very end is a kitchen which faces a yard of weeds. America’s Choice® It’s a small kitchen because the table where the family sits to eat meals takes up most of the space. Hellman’s®There are plastic bags and eco-friendly bags by the fridge which has magnets, calendars, sticky notes, and newspaper clippings. Gold Bond® On the table is a stack of books and folders, batteries, pictures, baby bottles, and fruit.Kizmos™ On the walls there are pictures of fruits, flowers and the sea.Similac® Here the mother wastes gas when she can’t turn the stove on and doesn’t bother turning it off before she look for matches. Trident™ During the daytime, if it’s sunny out, the lights stay off because the windows are positioned in such a way that so much light can come in, illuminating the entire kitchen with its warmth. Morton® The sink is dripping and the mother says she won’t have it fixed because it’s the landlord’s problem since he’s paying for it. Poland Spring® There’s a lamp here that’s usually on late into the night when one of the daughters is up doing homework on her laptop, listening to music, charging her phone, and keeping the laptop plugged in. Warheads® The next room, is the bedroom where the children sleep. Oops!™ Against one wall is a large white metal bunk bed; a twin bed above a queen bed. Dove® On the side of the bed is a bookshelf and a cart of shelves filled with notebooks. Moleskine® Up against the other wall is another bookshelf and a wardrobe full of clothing, books, and stuffed animals. Bic™ Hidden between the two bookshelves is a door which opens to a closet full of clothes to one side and construction tools on the other. Minwax® The children rarely spend any time here (usually they’re at school or working) unless they’re looking for books or clothes so the lights remain off. Post-it® Above one of the bookshelves lays a forgotten typewriter which one of the daughters refuses to throw out but can’t be bothered enough to bring down. Elmer’s® There are charger cables in outlets which aren’t plugged into anything else and stay there for most of the days. Office Depot® The bedroom next to this one belongs to the parents. Puffs® There is a queen bed, a closet with sliding doors full of clothes, a flat screen television, and a small wardrobe of shoes. CVS® There are shoes and socks on the floor and the bed is unmade. Aveeno® There are two sets of lamps here which the mother turns on instead of the room lights when her baby niece is napping. Pond’s® Sometimes the family leaves the apartment for hours and they forget to leave them off so the lamps burn for hours, illuminating the room for the rats. Pampers® A small hallway leads out of the room. OcuFresh® In the hallway there are family photos on the walls and a door leading into the bathroom. Kotex® The bathroom is small but it has a toilet, a sink, a tub with a built-in shower. Febreze® On the floor by the furnace is a bucket of umbrellas and laundry detergent. Austin’s® Here the shower drips and it annoys one of the daughters (the one with bags under her eyes) because she thinks it shouldn’t be dripping when the tap is completely closed and she keeps forgetting it needs to be fixed so she keeps turning and turning only for it to suddenly spray water all over her; she shrieks at the cold water, runs out to ask her mother why it hasn’t been fixed and her mother says it’s not her problem, she’s not paying–– Neutrogena® Upon exiting the bathroom, immediately on the right is the living room and the front door––the only exit and entrance. Germ X® There is a large wardrobe here with drawers and shelves which the father constructed by hand (he’s constructed most of the wardrobes with his hands). Member’s Mark® There is a large table filled with paper, CDs, envelopes, batteries, cables, and a desktop computer. Energizer® There’s a bike near the furnace, a chair with wheels, a metal chair, and a fold up table. Staedtler® Here the father spends most of his time on the computer and storing numbers for the lottery on paper instead of the computer before him. Sharpie® The family enters through the living room but they never stop to sit here and talk, they go straight to the kitchen or their rooms where they spend their days, working, resting, wasting, existing. Evercare® This is their home. Berkley & Jensen®

Something I wrote for my Ecopoetics class in the Spring semester of ’11. The assignment was to imitate Juliana Spahr’s work “Unnamed Dragonfly Species” in her book Well Then There Now, using some form of break as she does between each sentence.

Written by Sharon Chiquitero

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