Wednesday 21 March 2018

The Wednesday Poem #42 - God Save Us from the Limp Side Salad

God Save Us from the Limp Side Salad

This meal looks tasty, 
won't you say?
But what is that, 
coming my way?

The lettuce leaves are slightly grey,
The thin pink sauce seen better days,
The sliced tomato looks so dehydrated,
Not to be masticated!

Does anyone really eat this muck,
I tried it once and exclaimed "Yuck!",
But being English we're not that rude,
To send away disgusting food.

I have a theory, let me tell,
about the Devil and the nature of Hell,
It's not really fire, brimstone and torture,
Just all of your left over salad portions.

For ever and ever Amen! 

Copyright 2018 Roger Tichborne

When I was at school, my Catholic education involved ever more graphic descriptions of Hell. Demons taunting those that hadn't said their prayers before bed, unbaptised babies sent to Limbo ( I was puzzled when there was a Limbo craze shortly after). Satan was at the same time presented as a sadistic monster of the Alien ilk and a seductive charmer. I was even told that the devil would possess women just to steal your soul and give you impure thoughts. I once asked a visiting priest if the Devil had favourites in Hell. Whether he was meaner to the child who hadn't said his prayers than the sadistic serial killer. The priest said "The devil is equally evil to everyone". I couldn't really get my head around how the devil could possibly be an equal opportunity torturer. Other questions troubled me. As the Devil was torturing you for eternity, wasn't there just a small chance he'd get bored and give up? As I get older, I learned of Sado-Masochists. What does the Devil do with them? If they enjoy being tortured and watching other people being tortured and are surrounded by all of their friends? The more I thought about it, the less I could really understand it. Then I realised that Hell is really nothing like that. Hell is the lack of hope, the lack of friendship, the lack of warmth. I was trying to consider the embodyment of Hell many years ago when I was unfortunate enough to go for a curry with work colleagues. One was a committed born again Christian who followed a preacher called Reinhardt Bonkke (I kid you not). He was monopolising the conversation. At the time I was a vegetarian (well a non meat eater who ate fish). He spent half an hour lecturing me on how the bible said vegetarians were less intelligent than meat eaters. As I suffered this, not wishing to upset someone, I realised I'd discovered the true nature of hell. I'd finished all of my Tandoori prawns, as the portion was tiny. I was still hungry and all I had was the brown, shrivelled side salad listening to this chap pontificate. Imagine that for ever?

Sadly I am not someone who has limitless patience. I eventually asked him "If that's the case why didn't Jesus turn the fish into Lamb Kebabs when he fed the 5,000?" Sadly this suggestion did not go down too well. One thing was clear. He certainly didn't provide a limp side salad. Where do all the uneaten side salads go?

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