Spotlight series #45 : Simina Banu

rob mclennan
Jan 6 · 2 min read

Curated by Canadian writer, editor and publisher rob mclennan, the “spotlight” series appears the first Monday of every month.

STATEMENT

At some point during the last year, I noticed that I had accidentally begun writing a lot about food. In my attempts to convey various emotional peaks and valleys, a Cheeto, or perhaps some kale, would inexplicably spring into a poem. I’ve come to see that they (the poems; I don’t have the foresight to predict their tricks) weaponized food, relied on it to evoke the fitful and ever-changing power dynamics of doomed love. There is a purity associated with certain foods, and an impurity with others. And what does it mean when the communal activity of eating is divided on these lines? What does it mean to choose un-health not out of necessity but out of retaliation, even when all parties know that bag of Lay’s — or that passive aggressive “fine” — isn’t doing anyone any favours? Most importantly: how does one have a true food fight across a page to create maximum mess?

TWO POEMS

Whole Foods

are everywhere.

I volunteer to chop.
You quote Derrida
for some reason
while handing me asparagus.

It’s cold.
Not to mention the rain.
And the roof is caving in.

Multitasker: you correct my posture
while you Instagram an onion.
It’s a shame I can’t bake bread
with gluten
to throw at you.
A fire truck honks for a minute straight.
Conveniently, our flood
already extinguished our flame.
You begin explaining
Barolo to me,
but the room has filled up
like that scene from Titanic
and I can’t find the cuff.

I wield a spatula, unpoetically.

There are details in this dream that will only matter to its author:
you hold
my hand.

I wake up
gasping for air
submerged in kombucha.

regarding the smugness in the smoothie bowl this morning,

it overpowers
the passionfruit.
You forget
I used to love
health (too?)
Not picking
my battles,
I become
pro-oxidants.
I dip Ruffles
into the puree,
torpedo them
at your potted herbs.

Simina Banu is a writer interested in interrogating her own experience with technology, consumerism, pop culture and the poetics of (un)translation. Her poetry has appeared in numerous journals, including filling Station, untethered, In/Words Magazine and the Feathertale Review. She is the author of two chapbooks: where art (words(on)pages press) and Tomorrow, adagio (above/ground press). Her first full length collection of poetry, POP, is forthcoming with Coach House Books.

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