by Benjamin Garcia
What Not to Eat on New Year’s
Crab—because they skitter sidelong—might counter your clockwise.
Pheasant for fear of your luck taking wing. As Emily Dickinson said: hope is a feathered thing.
Don’t bother with the deviled-eggs, stuffed white mushrooms, lobster roll, shrimp in the shape of a big,
To bring in the moola & the mooing cow with yards & yards of pasture: go for the green—
literally. Let us lettuce our way into good health, fold up that spinach like a bankroll. Spin hay
Start to network // get promoted // sign up for Zumba // break up with that loser! // break
out of your shell!
Oh, resolutions, you mean to do well.
But maybe this is the year the chips are stacked in your favor, even if they are made out of kale and you’re unaccustomed to the flavor
of champagne. I’ve never entertained a thing like luck before. But here I am, being superstitious with my supper, leaving leftovers for the New Year.
And at midnight I meant to hold twelve grapes in my mouth at once but forgot to buy the grapes.
Don’t let perfection sour your grapes. This bottle of 6 dollar sparkling wine was once grapes—10, 9, 8—so it might still count:
Here’s to the past not making us sick.
Here’s to waking up tomorrow
and not feeling like absolute shit.
Say it like it’s not your last year:
¡Feliz año nuevo! // Happy New Year!
after the seven words forbidden to the CDC in 2018
Evidence and science cannot be debased by the base arse you are, 45.
Here is an ars poetica to the diversity of gender transcending titles.
You are entitled to your own opinion, but you are not entitled to my body.
You are entitled to your own opinion, but you are not entitled to your own facts.
You are entitled. Period. Full stop. Fool stop, I said. No is a complete sentence
when it’s followed by a period. Are you being followed? If spelling and grammar
don’t count, then you can go fallow your fellow followers. Are you following me?
An animal that feels vulnerable will bite indiscriminately. You are vulnerable,
you are animal, but the evidence-based record suggests you definitely discriminate.
Which leaves us with the million-dollar word. Here’s a hint: sounds like eat-us, feed-us
(b/c we are entitled to our pronouns, entitled to a living wage, entitled to living, period).
I beg your pardon. No, not impeachment. Not yet, though that word’s not far to follow.
The word is fetus—et meaning and, and us meaning us. Merry X-mas, the f is just for you.
Benjamin Garcia is a Community Health Specialist in rural New York. He works with a diversity of populations, including people who use injection drugs, people who identify as transgender, and women who want to learn more about choices regarding their body (including decisions that may involve a fetus). Because many of our communities are made more vulnerable by recent legislation, he is working to have evidence-based and science-based solutions recognized as inalienable entitlements. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in, among others, Boston Review, Kenyon Review Online, Best New Poets 2016, and Gulf Coast.