Food Court Display Case Waste (an Essay in Poetry)
by Jared T. Fischer
Food Court Display Case Waste (an Essay in Poetry)
Let's make a note on it
There is a food court in Washington, DC at Union Station
Next we go inside that food court
Some of the places use photos to show off their foods
Some use signs
Some have tantalizing hot bars lit up from which they serve the hungry travelers

Then you come upon the New York Deli or whatever it is called
Each morning at this fine establishment the employees set out 28 large plates of food
These are purely for display
While each plate could feed a couple
No one other than the trashcan will consume these overstuffed meals

Many of the sandwiches feature the fancy, moist remains of dead animals
Innards processed and beautified to slimy, shiny pinks, browns and whites
The employees noticeably neither look happy nor sad
Both when they are setting up the display case

With royal tomatoes, parsley and other green ornaments

And again when at the close of night they dump all those untouchable advertisements in the garbage

A sort of no-man’s-land

When a lion eats an animal that is clear
When a human eats an animal that is clear
But when a trashcan eats a dead animal that is unclear

Or depressing might be the word

At least disappointing—realistic impression
A human feeling

Okay and then there’s the math I was able to do
28 meals x 2 possible people fed per meal x 365 days/year = 20,440 people not nourished
By the wasted and not intended for sale food stuffs

Though again most of the food there is less than healthy in many ways
But its sustaining potential is still there
And the trashcan draws no health or bone growth from it all

Next up you are invited to consider the number of homeless and starving people who walk completely worn out and starved through Union Station
And yet for whatever reason this display case has to shine
The mandate of its forefathers and foremothers
A sort of rigid tradition of separation of harvest and the family
Let’s be bold
And stomp this practice out of existence
Posted by: Jared T. Fischer

Poetry (April 8th, 2011)

Tags: poetry, essay