Poetry by Claire Meniktas

Meat Shop

I want a say in how I am torn apart. It is my body afterall! Don’t be rude! Meat costs a pretty penny when you buy it from the butcher, so you can bet on all your enormous horses, and all the king’s mistresses that my extra rare, horribly tender, deep pink and bloody meat will be sold at a price that reflects its undeniable rarity. Just imagine me, posing like one of those sun-tanning pin up girls behind a greasy glass meat case, bottom front shelf in a red bikini bottom and a wet white button up t-shirt that barely covers my nipples, looking at you with my big sad eyes and a stupid yellow onion gripped between my teeth. And just like in all your dark twisted daydreams, the ones you are scared to even think in the workplace because you fear the images will leak out of your cubicle and before you know it you have a two weeks to pack every little pen and take a mental fortitude test, my dainty little wrists will be forced towards each other, my ankles kissing, both purposefully bound together with a fraying brown rope. Oh did you hear that!? Your number’s up, time to order. What will you get? I hear thighs are good for a flash fried meat sandwich! But then again, and I would know, I’m not sure that’s where I really shine. Perhaps some ribs? Perhaps all of me at a discounted price? I hear the taste of food all depends on how much love you put into it. So how much of yourself are you willing to give to this dish? On my end, I’m oozing with care, but it’s non-specific, embarrassingly unseasoned and easily overlooked. I need something to carve into my good spots, savor my fat, boil the bones. Tear me up in strips and show your guests that I am something worth savoring, they just didn’t know how.


touching you is crunching through the skin
of a single slice of tangerine
with my back teeth,
the inaudible breaking in my mouth,
the knowing I will never redress you quite right.
Why do I have to unearth you
to understand you?
I sit with the fruit in my mouth
you are now sweeter, but less specific,
orange mash,
a solid and a juice
one for me,
one for the house,
and everything that’s left, can be yours.
I separate another slice,
the skin isn’t the softest organ,
but it’s the only one I can put both my hands on
I separate another slice,
and there’s so much of it
I separate another slice,
spit out the seeds
I separate another slice,
Tear off the white strings
I separate another slice,
the peeling is the easiest part
I separate another slice,
if only it didn’t come first.

Claire Meniktas

Twitter: @_ClaireBear_7

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