“Mars” by Casey Killingsworth

There was this show on the massive amount of food
prepared everyday on a luxury ship, thousands
of pounds of shrimp and chicken and unspeakable
numbers of workers trapped on that boat,
racing against the clock to make every meal perfect.
I don’t even know if we have words to judge this.

Sometimes I don’t feel like I belong here, like I’m
different in the way a shrimp is different
from a chicken, the way they look at
the world with either feathers or from
underneath the ocean and in the end sharing
space on someone’s plate is all they have in common.

Sometimes I feel like I’m from another planet,
you know, like I’m lying there on someone else’s plate.
Then I walk down the street watching everyone watch
themselves in store windows believing the same thing,
how different they are. And I start thinking, well, maybe
we are all from Mars, or maybe we’re already on Mars,
and we’ve been here all along.

And if that’s true, then maybe we’re not so different after all.



Casey Killingsworth has work in The American Journal of PoetryKimera, Spindrift, Rain, Slightly WestTimberline Review, COG, Common Ground Review, Typehouse,  Bangalore Review, Two Thirds North, and other journals. His book of poems, A Handbook for Water, was published by Cranberry Press in 1995. He also has a book on the poetry of Langston Hughes, The Black and Blue Collar Blues (VDM, 2008). Casey has a Master’s degree from Reed College.


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