Inga Lea Schmidt reads "In the Aisle of Juice"

Audio Feature

 

 

 

 

Inga Lea Schmidt reads "In the Aisle of Juice"

Audio Feature

 

 

Here I find myself mislaid on my way
to find honey, which I’d say and do say
is absolutely juice to the stunned shelf-stocker,
arms chock-a-block with cocktail guns
he points left and counters CONDIMENTS
with a linoleum reverb that almost blasts
me right back into waxen produce but I hang on
to the Ocean Spray display and let him have it
with my Webster evidence: the extractable fluid
contents of cells, the natural fluids of an animal
body, the inherent quality of a thing, these are real
sweet definitions and honestly, to mislabel the promise
of honey as merely something added to enhance
flavor is to disrespect its viscosity and heft as existing
in our tissue, in our animal body, and does it stem,
all of it, from the fear somehow still sowed in our rows
of words like fluid animal body and thing, that this
is why we’ve committed this injustice to honey
as no longer nectar but now season packet the likes
of which we see in instant noodles, when will it
end I cry, this amputation of our animal bodies
from our fluid things, and can’t we end it now
but now the clerk has evaporated into fluorescence
and all this time I’ve been standing alone, spitting only
at dead hives of limeade and sterilized punch.

From Flock 20.

N.B. We recommend mobile viewing in landscape.

Here I find myself mislaid on my way
to find honey, which I’d say and do say
is absolutely juice to the stunned shelf-stocker,
arms chock-a-block with cocktail guns
he points left and counters CONDIMENTS
with a linoleum reverb that almost blasts
me right back into waxen produce but I hang on
to the Ocean Spray display and let him have it
with my Webster evidence: the extractable fluid
contents of cells, the natural fluids of an animal
body, the inherent quality of a thing, these are real
sweet definitions and honestly, to mislabel the promise
of honey as merely something added to enhance
flavor is to disrespect its viscosity and heft as existing
in our tissue, in our animal body, and does it stem,
all of it, from the fear somehow still sowed in our rows
of words like fluid animal body and thing, that this
is why we’ve committed this injustice to honey
as no longer nectar but now season packet the likes
of which we see in instant noodles, when will it
end I cry, this amputation of our animal bodies
from our fluid things, and can’t we end it now
but now the clerk has evaporated into fluorescence
and all this time I’ve been standing alone, spitting only
at dead hives of limeade and sterilized punch.

From Flock 20.

Inga Lea Schmidt has published work in Puerto del Sol, Gigantic Sequins, Cosmonauts Avenue, Hobart, and elsewhere. She was a 2013 AWP Intro Journals Project Winner in Poetry and won the 2015 Enoch Pratt Poetry Prize. She lives, eats, and writes in Pittsburgh.