Hello! Vegetarian poet speaking.
I’m here to tell you my soul is conflicted
about its many desires to eat meat.
I was eighteen when I gave it up –
a spontaneous decision after receiving
a pamphlet about vivisection from a penpal.
(Penpals used to be a thing. As did pens.)
I was at an Island’s Restaurant in Pasadena
and my young friend and I couldn’t get
furry and feathered faces out of our hearts.
That was the last chicken sandwich I had.
More decades than I’d like to admit
have passed by since then
and, I have to admit, I haven’t forgotten
about the general deliciousness of meat.
Back then the only vague simulation
was a mushroom burger from Trader Joe’s.
We hadn’t invented the concept of
plant-based yet and putting anything
in the shape of a burger on a bun
made us feel like every desire of our soul
was being satisfied.
They make it easy for us now with
words like beyond and impossible.
No animals are harmed in the production
of my dinners and I consecrate my pans
like I’m still in the desert,
waiting to cross the river
trying to determine how the last words
coming from the crazy man on the mountain
apply to me.