He held the Granny Smith apple under the running water, rinsing away the soap. Wrapping it in the frayed towel, he placed it on the kitchen counter. He turned over the vegetable peeler–how long had it been?–before unwrapping the apple.
He pressed the blade against the skin and scraped awkwardly. Then it all came back to him in a rush. His frustration fell away as the peel came off in one long curled strand. He cut even pieces, casting aside only the seeds.
The warped frying pan gleamed from his scrubbing. The butter melted as he carefully arranged the slices before sprinkling sugar and cinnamon.
He covered the card table with the faded checked tablecloth and clicked off the transistor radio. He held the candle wick to the burner until it caught.
In the candlelight he marvelled at it all. Fresh apple, sugar, cinnamon, his own kitchen. His own. He breathed deeply and the scent of cinnamon…the scent of cinnamon. A warmth, something so close and yet out of reach.
“Maybe I can make it on the outside,” he thought, before he could stop himself.