Taffy pull, sticky gooey, separating the licorice pieces on by one, pulling on them like I was unpeeling a banana, sticky gooey. It smelt like burnt cherries, with remnants of strawberry and anise. I'd been saving this piece. An after swim treat, my lips parched, back sunburnt, a piece of licorice and a cold glass of fizzy strawberry lemonade.

Bright red like the first summer sunset, the glean on the licorice made it even more enticing. Flashes of sweet red sparkled across as I sunk my two front teeth in, gummy along the ridges of my teeth, in my mouth, in my mouth.

I could feel it sticking stubbornly to my molars, I didn't care. I was so happy, under the sun, with my cherry licorice, sticky gooey.

Cherry licorice reminded me of the happy of happiest days, a spin on the coney island carousel, sinking my feet into warm sand, hopping on my bike, riding through late spring New York City streets, alive, curious and filled to the brim with love, a love for all that's simple and good in the world.  -NJ

You are spiced and sweet. Full of color, black beauty. You turn, twist, move with confidence. Mouth fulls of childhood. Stuck on teeth like nostalgia.

A namesake that makes me wonder. Now I am more interested in you without ice. -AD

Twizzlers at the movies. My mom, always, Twizzlers at the movies. She taught me about the drug store before the movies, and stuffing your prizes in your purse so they can't see them or take them from you. It was something to count on, and one way to say I love you is to say, I know what you love. At the drugstore before the car rides my brother and I would pick out the snacks and it was Twizzlers for Mom, always.

Always in the mornings she'd shake me, who loved school but hated waking, even then, ,and sometimes when I wouldn't get up it was a dixie cup of water to the face, the lick of the cold enough to bring me to the world for the day.

Have you ever noticed how Twizzlers smell like crayons? Have you ever in your life met a person who enjoys black liquorice? I hate hating a black anything, but the taste of it is wrong, a factory mistake that somehow people accepted as candy.

Back to the movies with my mom. The rustling susurous of the bag at a quiet part always made me feel more guilty than it should have, how dare my pinky finger twitch inside the bag at the sad quiet part, how dare I crackle crackle, sending nose through the quiet black, cutting the white light with my greed?  -KM

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