Who decides which beasts to eat
and which to award with prizes?
Purebred beagle earns a purple-
and-gold bow, and “hippopotamus”
has too many letters for a market
label. Let us all be named with words
so long that no one expects anything.
Who decides it’s a shortage of meat
rather than an excess of mouths?
The cows begging to be consumed
jumped over the moon from Hindu
lands and crashed into our grasses.
For years, frontier was a red carpet
we could unroll for their endless debut
until someone—who?—said, “No more
room for creatures like you.” Optimism
and courage are entrepreneurs serving
hippopotamus jerky to pioneer foodies.
Let us import hippos to Louisianan
swamps, where cattle refuse to roam.
But no, those already told, already used
to searing beef, pork, and chicken refuse.
One should be so lucky to be so ugly
and lacking a use assigned by who.