Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Poetry: Love in the Time of Listeria

Love in the Time of Listeria

On a quest for
cantaloupes  free of disease,
she parted the yellow curtain
and saw Mr. D alone
with his thoughts and a parakeet
in a bamboo cage

These fruit sellers, she
and was instantly attracted
to his mustache and white jacket and his
boxes of Fuji apples and
Gala and
Mandarin oranges in blue netting
and yes, there, there were cantaloupes
but each was split open, oozing old gold
seeds and ochre pulp
and Mr. D’s hands were colored with it, covered,
each finger.

When he saw her,
there between the curtains,
the parakeet made a sound like
choking on fruit
swallowing entire bananas
He was disgusted by the sound
But she said nothing, kneeling
in the mash
among the wet crates
scooping the flesh of warm cantaloupes
into her mouth.

Out on the street, that long
hot afternoon, it was July and then August
but behind the yellow curtain,
there were persimmons and Granny Smith
figs shoulder to shoulder,
all edible things, smooth and spined,
cut open
for them both
to eat.

On an unrelated note, a search for "Listeria" images resulted in a disturbing number of female original characters drawn and named by people who thought Listeria was a pretty girl's name. Overwhelmingly teenagers, it's a sad fact that many of them not only think that they made it up, but that they don't even know what listeria is. 

Now if you'll excuse me, I must return to working on my book. I've reached the part where the planet Bacterium is being threatened by the evil overlord, Paresis, and his sexy henchwoman, Herpes. Never fear! Our hero, Phage, will fend off those scurvy villains once again.

*warning: take mega-dose of vitamin C before reading


  1. I love this! I want more poetry from you.

    I met recently a female character going by the sweet name of Yersinia Goyle.

    (still Duni as smaranda)

  2. A colourful poem. Sumptuous descriptions!

  3. Thank you, both! Poetry, it still frightens me to write...