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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: September 21, 2018

A A A | A A A

Submitted: September 21, 2018



I work at a bowling alley Home to two-toned shoes and stale nacho cheese With the word “Foodie” emblazoned on my back I ferry forth your favorite guilty snacks Popcorn, pretzels, you want it? I got it.

And I get a few questions “Can I get no lettuce on this burger?” “Can I get pickles on the side?” “Could I have a salad instead?”

Their orders are meticulously crafted By cooks laboring over ovens and fryers Painstakingly preparing every order Swaddling your chicken-cheesy goodness in a delicate shell Nursing frozen patties back to life Imagine their surprise when their creations are sent back “I asked for no lettuce” “This isn’t what I wanted” “Send this back to the kitchen!”

The indignation of their inflection suggesting We committed some capital offense. As if the fate of the world Rests between the sesame seed buns What’s world hunger when you have a hungry customer?

There was one. One woman. A hungry soul. She walked into my alley and ordered a BLT A plain sandwich. Nothing special. 10 minutes pass. Then I appear. The Bearer of Bacon The Hero of Hunger The Slayer of Starvation

“I didn’t want this” “I asked for no tomatoes” she said “Why’s there a pickle?” she said “More mayo” she said She then stops and looks at me Slicing my soul with her empty brown eyes She cuts me off with one question: “Don’t you gay people know how to read?”

Unable to separate her hunger from her homophobia Her speech dips into repugnant flavors Her acidic words more akin to vinegar than honey glaze

This isn’t the first time when someone’s palate and politics collide Into a combo meal of Bigotry. Loathing. Tyranny. Not the BLT we serve on our menu

We offer a wide selection: Perfectly seasoned sons and daughters A spice rack of sexuality Foreign flavors unsettling stomachs of those used to just one taste

Parents looking over a menu of queer kids “I’m really feeling a straight son.. But if you don't have that in the kitchen I guess a gay one will do. Anything but a trans girl I’m allergic to those.”

I’ll take that BLT, hold the lettuce. I’ll take that son, hold the queer. But if you “hold the lettuce,” it’s no longer nutritious If you “hold the queer,” it’s no longer me.

Whatever cosmic chef made us, made us to order I’m not undercooked, I’m perfectly rare My flamboyance doesn’t come on the side Substitutions of my sexuality don’t work that way

Try as you might, we are here to stay You can take my bacon You can take my lettuce You can take my tomato Heck, you can even take our bathrooms

But you can never take the LGBT out of an LGBTBLT. And I’m sorry lady, but you can`t send this back to the kitchen.

© Copyright 2018 Leaf Emerson. All rights reserved.

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