He took me to the graveyard at twilight
The thrilling risk of staying out so late
He harvested the plants that bloom by night
An unexpected opening to the date.
I did not know how many herbs there sprout
Amongst the resting places of the dead
To take them is grotesque I feel put out
This does not seem the right way to be fed.
Nonetheless he set about the picking
Fragrant and flavoursome the plants he chose
Down there underneath the dead lie rotting
Will I eat that which has been fed by those?
He spoke of sauce to marinade his catch
As though he meant to take me in his snare
Would talk of stuffing make for me a match
Or did he mean to kill me in his lair?
How can one truly know a man’s intent
Talk of flesh is shameless and confusing
Is a fine banquet invitation meant
What exactly is the meat he’s using?
A wanton gesture, leaves touched to my face
As though he had designs upon my heart
Feed me herbs just to hasten my disgrace
Or break my ribs to take me quite apart.
How to interpret all this talk of food
Courtship or a terrible seduction
Romantic aims or something far more lewd
Honest soul or creature of corruption.
I thought about it.
For pity’s sake man don’t talk about meat
Without clarity and firm explaining
Don’t tempt with food trying to be discrete
Oblique offers are not that persuading.
Talk plainly fellow, if you talk at all,
Am I to go and look upon your hams
Have you got a pot that’s full of meatballs
Are you inviting me to taste your clams.
There’s nothing more annoying to my mind
Than being vague when speaking about meat
I like to know what I am going to find
Be it firm, or soft, distended or neat.
A gentleman should make himself quite clear
Be plain about what he has in his pot
His corpse herb sauce does not fill me with fear
Tell me how many tentacles he’s got.
(Whether Mrs Beaten knows what she is implying, is always a question you have to ask with her. It’s hard to say which would be more alarming, some kind of deadpan innuendo, or managing to say this from a state of utter obliviousness.)