Poetic Injustice-NaPoWriMo 2016


April is National Poetry Writing Month, so I’m just a couple of days shy of filling this blog with daily food-themed “poems”. I’ve done this the past few years, and it’s proven to be a great writing exercise-though not necessarily the best reading exercise, so apologies in advance.
I don’t spend more than 15 minutes or so on each piece, and don’t plan what I’m going to write about until I sit to do the blog.  Styles vary, I’ve done everything from haiku to odes, and I particularly like lesser-known forms like nonnets. Some are serious, most are silly.
As a primer, I present a sampling of favourites from previous years. Oh, and if you would like your favourite vegetable, say, or meal, or anything food-themed really, immortalized in poetry, drop me a line and I’ll see what I can do. *
(*offer only good in April. Results may vary. 🙂)

Sugar Shack Nonnet
A nonnet is nine lines, with the first line being nine syllables, the next line eight and so on until the last line of one syllable, and typically in iambic meter.

“Temps des sucres” means the sugar season,
Horse drawn sleighs whisk sweet tooth diners
In through woods, and feasts begin
and for “tire sur la neige”
boiled maple syrup
dribbled on snow
hardened fast

Beet Haiku
Grace under fire
Beets perform their best when they
Are in a pickle

Meat, my limerick
A vegan I happened to greet
Questioned my choices to eat
And was shocked and appalled
When quite loudly I bawled
I LOVE veggies, that’s why I eat meat!

Cabbage Baggage
Were ever there vegetables so maligned
And saddled with so much baggage
Than the cruciferous family, largely defined
As Brussels sprouts, broccoli and cabbage?

Cauliflower, collards, kohlrabi and kale
Are just as cruciferous, true
But the populous thought will always prevail
That the big three will crucify you

Brussels sprouts, broccoli and cabbage-the smell
Whilst they’re cooking is downright muciferous
Even the names to the ears sound harsh; well,
For certain, not very mellifluous

Most egregious of all is that thing that they do
All the rumbles and gurgles they send
As Odiferous roughage makes it’s way through
Your system, right to the end.


Food Shame
Hot summer day
Ice cream cart bell
Draws laughing children
They see frozen treats
She sees schoolyard torment

Friday night mall rats
Gather in the food court
Adolescents giggling at formica tables
They see sharing fries as flirtation
She sees standing in corners at school dances

University study sessions
Ordering pizza into the dorms
Anxious students share care-package cookies
They see fuel for pre-exam all nighters
She sees being home alone on Friday date nights

Workplace holiday gatherings
Bars well stocked, buffet tables groaning
Lines snake around tables, loading up plates
They see a company sponsored culinary free-for-all
She sees coworkers in silent judgement of her choices

A lifetime of seeing
Unable to eat herself blind


Tables, Turned
Dining room ready for evening meal,
Set with finest silver, crystal and china
Housekeeper brings in plated dinners
Father stabs food with fork, checking messages on cel
Mother affixed to hers as well
Daughter picks but barely eats, earbuds blasting boy band pap
Son shovels in his food, not looking up from game in lap
Chewing to discordant rhythm
Pushing back chairs, hurriedly scattering
Like marbles dropped on hardwood floor

Hut door open in late summer heat
Warm breeze sweeps through tiny quarters
Mother welcomes father back from field
Gathers family on mats round the floor
Bowls of rice and vegetables passed
Some meager meat shredded for all
And flatbread used as cutlery
Daughter giggles as son teases
Parents smile with benevolent pride
Chatter flow across the food
Happy laughter fills the air
Tales of the day and stories shared
Outside, darkness falls. Inside is alight.


Deal Breaker
They met online, a dating site
And texted well into the night
Each thought the other seemed all right
And so a plan was made

To meet in person face to face
At somewhere safe, a neutral space
A restaurant seemed just the place
And dinner plans were laid

He saw her first, across the room
As interest, sparked began to bloom
Her apprehension, his inner gloom
Were swept away post haste

The sommelier presented wine
He tasted, and pronounced it fine
They settled in to chat and dine
Conversation, flirtily laced

He boldly ordered oysters, shucked
And wondered if he’d pushed his luck
When with casual aplomb, she plucked
One from his shell to taste

Their entrees came, they shared the quail
Filet mignon and lobster tail
The courtship dance was in full sail
The fire in full burn

She proffered her sweet, a crème brulee
Which he declined and waved away
She looked at him with great dismay
His fortunes sharply turned

She left him sitting in his chair
Gave him money for her share
Flounced out, leaving him to stare
What happened at this meal?

He texted, asking what went wrong
Expected to hear the same old song
His answer came before too long
Twas “No dessert, no deal”

Moose, Meat
Autumn morning, rising sun
burnishing barrens gold
Father and son wait patiently
For glimpse of brown through brush
Moose steps into field of sight
Son shoulders .308 with steady aim
He finds his mark

Bull turns its massive antlered head
With regal grace and pride of place
And for a moment gazes lock
Soft brown eyes look into blue
Fingers tremble slightly
On trigger, squeezing tightly

Father exhales softly “now, son”
The shot is clean, right through the brain
Majestic animal collapses, down
On legs surprisingly spindly
Dead before it hits the ground

The meat is quartered, packed and hauled
Nothing left but blood stained leaves
This animal did not die in vain
No wastage here, no trophy kill

And though he loves his mother’s stew
The moose meat braised to tender turn
The boy, he will not hunt again



5 thoughts on “Poetic Injustice-NaPoWriMo 2016

Add yours

  1. Great post Liz, tears escaping my eyes after reading “Food Shame”, hits close to home. ❤ I can't wait to see what you come up with this April. 🙂


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