On the picket line

Eggs swimming in gruel. A smear of bruised avocado. You chow
down cheerfully. I slip my meal, bite by bite, to the dogs. Only the
cucumber (cold; quiet; elegantly sliced) seems palatable. Shake
your head at me, if you will. The world has turned sour and I can
no longer bear its taste, no longer hold it in my gut. If you can’t
eat you can’t fight
, you say, lifting a spoon to my lips. Nice try,
buddy. But too late. I have already left the battlefield.

Jen Webb


Jen Webb is a poet who works at the University of Canberra, and has been published by journals and anthologies in Australia, Canada, the USA, UK and China. She is the author of several poetry chapbooks and, with Paul Hetherington, of Watching the World: Impressions of Canberra (Blemish Books 2015).

© 2018