Monday, October 17, 2005

Scary Food

and Nightmares —

Our city at the center of the cone
of projected impact for a category five hurricane
sent Austinites scurrying for provisions.

Looking for non-perishable protein
at a grocery store out of milk, tortillas, bread
and bottled water, I found gourmet salami
rolled in herbs and made in France.

I don't buy American beef because, in spite
of mad cow disease in our cattle, the FDA does
not require universal testing.

So the French salami was a find, a meat product
unlikely to be contaminated by a disease
that eats holes in your brain.

I bought three rolls, later looked at the expiration
dates, then decided when the storm missed us
to celebrate -- cut open the herb salami.

It was delicious, primal, astoundingly good.
We devoured it, licked thyme and oregano
off our fingers.

We could live on this stuff.
One night we didn’t cook dinner.

And then the nightmares started.

In one my left arm and neck had been sliced
into thick pieces, like salami.

I couldn’t move without falling apart
and my posture bent oddly.

My father appeared from death to
help, but couldn’t.

I woke up, afraid of the dark.

Another night I was repeatedly pulled
into a forest where an assassin/rapist
was waiting to devour me,
and screamed myself awake.

Later my dream world shifted.
I walked across a bridge that turned
into a grassy levee saturated with acid.
The river beyond hissed and boiled.

We decided not to eat any more
scary food, gave the last of the salami
to the dogs who barked and cried
in their sleep too.

About that time the news filled up with
stories about a possible Avian Flu pandemic
coupled with reports that the pharmaceutical
conglomerates couldn’t/wouldn’t

make vaccine to counteract it because there
was a chance their product would expire before
a pandemic took hold --

followed with news that the Spanish Flu
of 1918 was really Avian Flu --

coupled with even better news that
we would employ the army to enforce
quarantines in lieu of modern medical advancements,
like vaccine.

This military approach to disease
control is such a good idea Congress is about
to cut medicare benefits, so poor people won't be
able to afford vaccines anyway.

Tax breaks for corporations and the rich are,
however, inviolate.

Suspect beef, bird flu, swine flu --

Venison is ok so far, but deer carry ticks
that spread Lyme Disease.
Fish are full of mercury.

Monsanto rice, grain, veges
produce sterile seed that require
Monsanto fertilizer and pesticides,
which are carcinogenic.

Scary food.

©copyright, 2005, Susan Bright

Susan Bright is the author of nineteen books of poetry. She is the editor of Plain View Press which since 1975 has published one-hundred-and-fifty books. Her work as a poet, publisher, activist and educator has taken her all over the United States and abroad. Her most recent book, The Layers of Our Seeing, is a collection of poetry, photographs and essays about peace done in collaboration with photographer Alan Pogue and Middle Eastern journalist, Muna Hamzeh.


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*picture courtesy of Nick Chaldakov


Blogger Charlie Loving said...

There are so many chemicals in everything that it is no wonder people get aches and pains. Meat is really bad with all the chemistry that goes into the preserving of the stuff. And the feed that those animals are fed is a marvel of modern chemistry. God bless Monsanto and Texas A&M.

It is amazing that all those chickens and ducks are carrying a flu strain in the first place with all the antibiotics they are fed.

Ahh, but once again the culprit seems to be those nefarious Chinese (Orientals?). I read somewhere or saw that they gave their chickens some sort of antibiotic developed for people to make them healthier (the chickens) and not be so suceptible to avian flu. But those smarty feathers developed an imunity to the antibiotic. "Cluck, cluck, cockadoodledoo." Foghorn Leghorn strikes back.

What do the mega food producers do if someone wants to destroy all those zillions of birds? And maybe their cows too (mad cows).

In another silly aside there were all these sheep in Iceland that got mad sheep diesease. The icey folks herded or flocked them all together and burned them up. Then they imported uninfected sheep from New Zealand. Sonded good to the iceys. But, opps, the mad sheep disease was imune to being burned up. "WHAT?"

I always look to see if there is any natural coloring (MSG) in the stuff I buy and never buy anything that isn't labeled. It is very hard since the labels are in zero point print and printed like black on black. That MSG stuff makes my chest knot up and gives me a headache plus I can't breath.

We can thank the Chinese for MSG, it came from a nature early on as a natural flavor enhancer. A chemical that deludes the brain into thinking the stuff you are eating is better tasting then it really is. The biologic engineers made a version that could be mass produced and now everyone is using it (almost). I have seen it in 50 gallon drums in the kitchens of chinese eateries.

I try to stick with natural foods. They are usually fine but they do grow in the atmosphere which drizzles evil microscopic elements onto them, no matter how careful you are. Rainwater is contaminated too, which makes me wonder about those bottles of "Rainwater" and why are they bottled in plastic which leaches microscopic badness into the water that causes birth defects and sterility in hamsters and humans.

So I am off to the kitchen to make my breakfast Smores.

6:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your nuts!

but I like reading this blog.

1:09 PM  

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