I like both Chinese Food and Poetry by Soodabeh Saeidnia

I am not a silent poet

As far as I know, I have liked Chinese food
as much as I’ve liked reading a doggerel
I would be depressed, if I noticed that
they have run out of noodle soups
and Zhajiangmian (with a Cantonese accent)
but at the same time, I would be more upset,
if I realized that there is no space
to pen a satiric persona poem in a Chinese restaurant
How close is racism to privilege, and
implication to congratulation?
Oh American foodies, please
let me suck my noodles
and read New Yorker’s lines
while my made-in-China cigarette
burns forgotten on the ashtray

This poem is in response to the news about the writer Calvin Trillin’s poem in the April 4 issue of The New Yorker describes, in the voice of an exasperated American foodie, the varieties of Chinese cuisine now available. Some readers found it hard to swallow.

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