Multicultural Indigestion

    The Hostess

Crowned in Afro-tribal headdress,
On her chest a Slavic tunic;
Appearing as a prophetess
Or a schizophrenic eunuch…

On her wrists ring Irish bangles—
Wrapped round her waist a bright sarong;
On her breast a pendant dangles
Like some Oriental gong.

Multi-kulti represented
As a woman, weirdly dressed.
Every ethnic group is feted
On arrival to the West.

The Dinner

Everybody bring your dish!
The ethnic potluck has begun.
Afterwards your guts will wish
Your culture had remained as one.

Foods collide, repel, and mingle
In the cultural melting pot;
Yet it’s hard to find a single
Way to describe this mixed-up lot.

Curry dances with Kielbasa
Chinese dumplings, Jello, slaw;
Deviled eggs, the odd samosa
Beans and rice, cheap sushi raw.

Soul food, Kimchi, Spanish rice,
Pad-Thai, grits, potato salad;
Gastronomic paradise?
Or a nauseating ballad . . .

Out of many, not quite one—
You bravely burp. It’s quite diverse . . .
But as your stomach comes undone
Digestion goes from bad to worse.

E pluribus to Alka-Seltze®
Groaning in your bed at three:
Let it fizz and hope it helps, sir
Lest you doubt diversity…

I’m Diversity. I am strength!
Sings the undigested food.
Perhaps we all shall know, at length
If global change was for the good.



Write your own two-part poem that focuses on a food or type of meal.
In the poem, describe the food or meal as if it were a specific kind of person.
Give the food/meal at least one line of spoken dialogue.


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