A&F Poetry Collections: ‘aisle browsing at price chopper’

i push my squeaky wheeled

cart through lanes of traffic;  

crumpled bags of tortilla chips 

wave at me, as my untied shoelace  

is noticed by a mother of two,  

grabbing peaches and plums. 


i’m tethered to plastic celery 

raised by foreigners – ripped

from forgotten habitats of humanity. 

preteens packaged and processed  

to be adopted into broken homes 

serving pits of french cuisine and gluttony. 


twenty-three dozen eggs; freezing  

in cages, these frustrated little chicks,

cruelty and cage free, advertised 

like an unpaid internship. they’re surrounded 

by milks made from rusted nuts 

that demand water like they’ve been burned. 


why did i wear short-sleeves, bare legs, 

goosebumps forming, a window breeze 

after a thirsty shower. walking through

frozen alleys; filled with ceaseless alternatives 

for tireless bread makers and FDA certified 

popsicles made from cigarettes.  


i’m strolling by pounds of little debbies 

that moisten my tongue, like the

extra butter i was taught to order

while at the cinema. snack, crackle, 

and pop draw me into conversation, 

advertising sugar free addiction.   


macaroni products – that have neither 

cheese or noodles – tease me with 

side eyed winks and nutritional labels,

situated next to the international sauces  

shipped from the California coast, and 

made with midwestern molasses. 


i watch the butcher and baker, 

behind foggy glass caskets, wearing 

open toed shoes and saggy gloves, 

attempting to sell pork shoulders

that have never smelled fresh air 

and cakes iced with clotted cream.


i tap my platinum credit card   

of sopping wet privilege, to an 

eyeless machine, that always asks

for donations to a CEO’s paycheck,

(naturally i click yes), just as i look

up at the blinding LED’s gleam.