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They Say You Are What You Eat

When I was a kid I was like,
“No, you are not.
I’m eating a pineapple and I’mnotafreakingpineapple.”
EYEROLL. But I get it now, I get what that means.
What you consume affects the way you are.
And I was cheap chicken beaks and sausage rolls, 
The Bachelor, ads for disposable wipes,
factory misery with a Nike sole.
I ate cows who never learned the word graze,
presented neatly on black styrofoam trays.
I was nuggets and no-name,
worshipping fame, asleep
in a Candy Crush shame.
Magazine perfume strip malls,
TV nutrition ice-cream bouquets,
commercials between everything,
scrolling envious, scowling,
Instagram filters like LA fillers,
house calls, finger conversations and
two taps on the app
instead of taking Google maps.

Now I try to be more seeded rye,
a long black flashback
that wants to take all those McMeals back.
What I ate was like a tyre fire burning a
me-sized sphere in the atmosphere.
I was about to choke till I got woke.

                …And you can’t un woke yourself. 

Once it’s been done
it’s done forever.
             And it’s been done.

From puppy farms to parmigiana,
I feel it inside, claws scratching at my gut,
sad eyes, and a desperate fear that
our consumer ears don’t want to hear.
We sink in baths, heads underwater
breathing hardcore through a thin straw.
It’s hard to swallow the anger when there’s
no honey to help that medicine go down
(also fun fact: honey is bee vomit).

I try to wear good like a falcon hood,
so my bubble can be more like a star.
They say you are what you eat and the
scars in my heart are healing the
sound of baby animals screaming.
I can put voices where there are barks,
take hooves off boats and into parks.
We as a human race are born into default
kindness and have the power of mindfulness.
We know what to do to get ourselves through.
It comes down to looking behind the shine
to see the truthy grime.
And I’m all about the grime.
’Cause that’s what they don’t want you to see, but
I can take it. Hit me with your truth bombs
like a computer game grenade.
Blow me up like a story
Say, “But what about bacon?”
one more time.
I’m ready.

 

Go to Emilie Zoey Baker's profile to read more poems