Bliss Point or What Can Best Be Achieved by Cheese

Benjamin Garcia

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A.k.a.

 

        the other gold.

 

                 Now that's the stuff,

 

                         shredded or melted

 

                                   or powdered

 

                                         or canned.

 

                                                    Behold

 

                                  the pinnacle of man

 

                    in a cheeto puff!

 

   Now that's the stuff

 

                     you've been primed for:

 

                                         fatty & salty & crunchy

 

            and poof—gone. There's the proof.

 

Though your grandmother

 

                    never even had one. You can't

 

                               have just one. You

 

                                        inhale them puff—

 

                                                            after puff—

 

                                                        after puff—

 

                            You're a chain smoker. Tongue

 

                   coated & coaxed

 

but not saturated or satiated.

 

                    It's like pure flavor,

 

                             but sadder. Each pink ping

 

                                              in your pinball-mouth

 

                                                      expertly played

 

                       by the makers who have studied you,

 

                         the human animal, and culled

 

               from the rind

 

your Eve in the shape

 

                           of a cheese curl.

 

                                       Girl,

 

                           come curl in the dim light of the TV.

 

                       Veg out on the verge of no urge

 

               of anything.

 

Long ago we beached ourselves,

 

                      climbed up the trees then

 

                             down the trees,

 

                                  knuckled across the dirt

 

                  & grasses & thorns & Berber carpet.

 

                             Now is the age of sitting,

 

                      so sit.

 

And I must say,

 

         crouched on the couch like that,

 

              you resemble no animal.

 

                     Smug in your Snuggie and snug

 

                                    in your sloth, you look

 

                               nothing like a sloth.

 

And you are not an anteater,

 

                     an anteater eats ants

 

                                   without fear

 

                        of diabetes. Though breathing,

 

      one could say, resembles a chronic disease.

 

                                                                          What's real

 

                  cheese and what is cheese product?

 

                  It's difficult to say

 

     but being alive today

 

                        is real–

 

                                 real–

 

                                       really

 

                   like a book you can't put down, a stone

 

            that plummets from a great height. Life's

 

         a ''page-turner" alright.

 

             But don't worry

 

                                if you miss the finale

 

                                        of your favorite show, you can

 

                                            catch in on queue. Make room

 

                                 for me and I'll binge on this,

 

                                                   the final season with you.

 

From Thrown in the Throat by Benjamin Garcia (Minneapolis: Milkweed Editions, 2020). Copyright © 2020 by Benjamin Garcia. Reprinted with permission from Milkweed Editions. milkweed.org