Atomized

You walk into an Indian restaurant to

Savor

the authenticity of exotic flavors

Brought to India by Spanish and Portuguese

Traders

From the Americas and Caribbean,

Cultivated by West African slaves

Fed

Southeast Asian rice who were

Sold

To European traders by Ugandan chieftains

In exchange for central Asian cloth.

Your tikka masala – national dish of Britain –

Spatters the shirt you

Bought

On vacation in Puerto Rico,

Woven in Indonesian looms

From Deep South cotton.

And you attempt to

Focus

On the conversation at hand:

Your colleague from down the hall,

who speaks the same language.

Something about computers… Networks… Packets…

Lost.

How can this world be so universal?

So impossibly, unfathomably… 

Connected 

That you cannot but feel complicit in the

Guilt

Of its atrocities? And yet so

Specialized

That – despite the company of fellows –

There remains a distance across the table 

Which leaves you, ironically,

Alone?

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