Poem: A Carpapalooza by Regie Cabico

I can write about colonialism Disney riots and inoculations centuries of American history before me Pocahontas is bust Rosa Parks arrest records Elvis Presley meeting Nixon but with only an hour to go before recording a poem I'm in the Starbucks struggling with the most profound piece of literature in the archives it's the card the Bureau of fisheries urges Americans to eat the carp this resilient variety of fish that Lal the tea guardians of Japan and became the staple for gefilte fish to Jews is 43 million pounds strong at the turn of the 20th century we were coaxed to eat carp croquettes jelly and caviar before they were McNuggets there was the carp those oversized goldfish that multiplied from Carolina to California with the force of horseless carriages pounding through our streams I was going to write haikus to the carp Neruda like ode to the carp Howell Alan Ginsberg style to the carp create a Jackson Pollock splatter of concrete poetry all over our marble capitol city to the carp I even wanted to write a Filipino riddle to the carp with a lemongrass and soy sauce ultimately this poem was supposed to be a carpe diem poem to the carp to live and roam the continent free as a carp so seize the carp gross the carp so the carp fisheries are lit in flames oh lord give me the carp the power should go on and pay my student loans and find a boyfriend and okay Cupid's hole lord give me carp crispy fried in Crisco give me carp the musical Oh Lord serve me a sweltering sausage of carp with sriracha and mustard on a whole-wheat bun you

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