The menu abounds with tantalizing options
But I only have one mouth and one stomach
Two if you count the reserve for dessert
And thus I am forced to agonize as if
This is the last meal I will eat on this
Earth and it might be so I take it seriously

This morning I was in a fishy mood
In addition to having a hankering for salmon and basmati
Yet as the day progressed and tasks were accomplished
I felt like I had earned a treat which brought that chipotle honey
Fried chicken to mind but I am pretty sure
I had that on Tuesday and I hate to repeat

Steak is never a bad choice unless you are
A cow or depend on the environment for your survival
I am not sure that I can handle the guilt today
Even though that dauphinoise potato side looks fire
So I briefly toy with that sad vegetarian napoleon
Dish that is fooling nobody with its compulsory placement

The waiter is really keen on the pork shank which
Makes me think that it is not selling well or else is
Older than strictly sanitary and I feel as if salsify puree
Is the new thing just for the sake of it and the culinary
Bandwagon is not my preferred means of conveyance
I relish the byways not the highways in my gustatory adventures

I wish that they would just let me have blueberry pancakes
Since they obviously have the ingredients in the back
I am pretty sure I saw a cobbler go to another table a minute ago
And I have that travel size maple syrup in my coat pocket
Because I like to put it in my coffee to transport me to a ski lodge in
Canada or pour it when the proverbial blackness needs sweetening

Maybe I can make a whole meal out of the appetizers section
Which also has a subheading for snacks and I did not realize
That I was reading an academic paper and now I am concerned that
I missed an important footnote and where is the abstract and are there references
The typeface is attractive but all of the serifs in the dictionary
Are not going to make this decision any easier

My dining companions look so confident in their ordering
I cannot continue to stall but I also do not want to settle
I will ask for a complicated cocktail so that I can both distract
And delay so that I can read through this list for the umpteenth
Time and again disappointingly wonder if those tech bros have
It right with the soylent green dupes

Prisoners get so much alone time and also have their meal choices
Made for them perhaps I should commit some nonviolent felony
To free me from the responsibility of this table but maybe I am being
Just a little bit dramatic since I suppose whatever option I select will
Likely be better than stale bread and moldy meat substitute and
I already get a lot of time to read so may forestall criminal activity for now

I forgot the kids menu which I then requested and the server gave me a
Tight smile that suggested I may be too old for that which seems like age
Discrimination but that is outside my bailiwick and so I continue to browse
With visions of a hot dog and a scoop of vanilla ice cream dancing in my
Head while I am resigned to having to endure the ignominy of a Michelin
Star shining in the eye that just wants to rest on a suitable plate of food

All of a sudden I am in the mood for a steaming bowl of pho
A useless clarity given that this restaurant hews more colonizer than colony
Usurping all of the ideas but little of the flavor and none of the soul
As it turns out blood is good for making sausage but not for spilling
Napalm is also too spicy for my taste so I creep back onto The Continent
A presumptuous moniker given that there is more than one

Unable to put it off any longer I place my order for the anodyne pasta dish
That is somehow the choice that I make even though I am trying to eat less gluten
And then I spend the next few minutes in a freefall of regret while my tablemates
Appear to me a little too smug in the happiness that will certainly
Befall them when their plates arrive followed by the tears that will well
When I regard my horrid mistake since I actually despise pesto

A faintly charred smell begins to emanate from the open kitchen followed
By creative profanity and then the heavenly clanging of a fire alarm
That requires us to abandon the table and the travesty of a meal that
I am trying hard to appear disappointed to be missing but know inside that
I have been saved the heartache of a wasted hour or two at table and am
Now liberated to go eat chicken fingers and tots as the Lord intended.

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