|Rockaway boardwalk, 1903, via Wikipedia, digital record|
Peaceful violence and violent peace
were names of two new drinks on the boardwalk
and we watched from the dry bar of sand far
out in the bay as our friends took one each.
Peaceful violence was redder than toe-
mate-O juice formed by crushing the ripest
feet in shoes with no room for growth, squeezing
lemon juice on them and serving on ice.
Violent peace was clear of blood, but full
of the seeds of pomegranates preserved
in tequila swarming with full-grown worms
screaming eat me, eat me until some did.
You said Peace-Vi was safer than Vi-Peace
because it had no alcohol in it
but I think it is better to be drunk
than to be cannibals enjoying blood.
And we wondered if Peaceful Peace could be
and if the bar also served Violent Violence
thinking the first would be lemon and ice
with pomegranate juice and the second—
Violent Violence—would be a tincture
of toe meat mixed with writhing worms and blood
preserved in tequila. We laughed at this
imagined horror but also feared it.
We knew the human race we were part of,
guessed three of our four drinks would please most and
wondered if bartenders only mixed us
opposites to prevent mass poisoning.
Oh, well, we sighed as we left in search of
liquid we could swim in—cool like water,
wet like a drink—no longer availablein the junk-yard bays devoid of oceans.
Inspired by the at Writer's Digest.
Copyright © 2014 S.L.Chast