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Monday, February 27, 2006


by James Penha

“As God is my witness, I’ll never be hungry again.”
—Scarlett O'Hara in Gone With The Wind

[Guantánamo General Bantz] Craddock suggested that the medical staff had indulged the hunger strikers to the point that they had been allowed to choose the color of their feeding tubes.

—The New York Times

Qualities of mercy are not strained
although they have been liquified
in the bush war on hunger:
feed the world’s wretched
by lining poor nasal passages
with plastic hoses turbinated
into guts primed
for floods fulfilling
nutrition without even
the sharp pains and bleeding
of frequent tubal
insertions and extrications
since the satiated now keep
the apparatus in fashionable
red, white, or blue close within
themselves until starvation

is less striking.

James Penha edits The New Verse News.