Of Tomato Ketchup, Among Other Things

They add tomato ketchup for taste
All they have to do is squeeze a bottle
To add flavor
Where’s the hard work in that?
Where’s the hard work of boiling tomatoes,
and tempering them?
Of measuring vinegar,
and seeing the red simmer to turn crimson?
What about the time spent waiting for the puree
to cool down and the
acids to be just right?
None of that is considered.
All of it seems unimportant when all you
can do is pick a bottle to spice up
a dish to make you happy.
Everyone loves tomato ketchup;
stuff that you can buy off a shelf.
Easy peasy.

Ask them if they know how mother
used to make it
and they wouldn’t know.
Who cares?

It’s all available.
Even the Rodin is available.
So is the Mona Lisa.
All one needs to do is take a plane
Or take a cruise
Or take a trip to wherever
you want to go to heighten your senses.
A book is available off the shelf.
A painting, in the museum.
A movie on the screens.
And a lady who likes to preen.
All one needs to do
is place an order.

What you can’t do is this
You can’t buy a sunset
A sunrise
A hug
The moonrise
Or a smile
You can’t dial one.
You can’t order one.
You can’t pick one off the shelf.
You’ve got to walk to the beach,
or wake up to the friend
or meet a child
or walk back home tired
and spent
while the moon accompanies you
after the sun has set.

But then again, if one has tomato ketchup,
on a sandwich,
in front of a tv,
who wants the sunset?


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