Too tough, by Matthew Harrison

I hear the daughter say,
“Try this piece, mother –
It’s tender, full of iron,
It will keep you young.”

The aged mother picks it up,
Drops it, recovers it,
And with her daughter’s help,
There, at last, it’s in her mouth.

The family watch as the old lady chews
And chews and coughs and says,
“Not bad, though not as good
As it used to be here;
They’re going downhill.”

I think how that beef came,
Cooked, to the table –
The kitchen where they chopped up
The slabs from the wholesaler,
The factory that carved the carcass into slabs,
And on back to that dreadful place
Where living creatures amble in
And exit lifeless hulks.

And I think that somewhere,
If the universe is just,
There must be another place
Where another production chain
Delivers to a bovine family –
Standing, perhaps, rather than seated –
Around a largish table, a loaded dish,
Which the mother,
Even harder to please,
Sends back to the kitchen.

Matthew Harrison lives in Hong Kong, and whether because of that or some other reason entirely his writing has veered from to literary to science fiction and he is currently writing poetry.  He has published pieces in all of these genres.  Matthew is married with two children but no pets as there is no space for these in Hong Kong.

Posted on December 21, 2016, in Issue 19: Speculative Poetry and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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