Poems Are Like Belgian Chocolates


Poems are like fine Belgian chocolates
You wouldn’t want to eat a whole box all at once.
Have a few, close the box and put it away.

Enjoy a few more later.
This way won’t make you sick, and
This way won’t make you sick of chocolate either.

This might be a fine reward!
A burst of flavor at the end of the day

Well, what is the role of art in your life?
Is it onslaught without end, a gluttony?
An IV-drip from your Spotify from morning til night?
Every night, do you turn off the family your blood, and turn on Netflix?
Is every morning the morning after Halloween at age nine, 
Vaguely nauseated from gorging yourself
But emptiness in your stomach and sour pain in your veins
Craving another fix as your blood sugar is crawling towards zero?
We binge but never purge.

When I was red bronze and muscles
I was in the desert for months, far from any radios, no music for weeks on end
And I found a cassette in dirty street sand on the outskirts of Cairo
It wasn’t in Arabic like the one I bought from a cabbie in Sinai
This was Madonna
Songs I’d always hated.
But we played the ancient cassette and it sounded like a burst of rain from the clouds
Manna from heaven, sweet soul food.
Maybe it was that Biblical landscape
But it was also the gift of choosing when to listen to music
When to take in the fully born ideas and dreams and chord structures

Art is a compression, a distillation
A jungle in an hourglass
A majestic ecosystem on your wall or on your page or in your speakers

Take it when you want to fly through possible worlds
And choose those moments yourself!

And zip back through the ether when you’re full
so that you can carry some fruits from these jungles
And nibble a bit when you’re actually hungry
or spray their colors on the walls of that grey little room