The Joy of Killing

(from a culinary bestseller)

Murder
comes from recipes
steeped
in tradition,
Its chefs du cuisine
beaten
by classical erudition.
Knives
form the base
of the soldier’s trade
Gold
mixed with blood
aristocrats’ lemonade.
Death
once ten courses
countless corpses
to carve
bladders and aders
children
to starve.
Dignified
diners
on diets object
in boardrooms
such calories
can no longer digest.
Reducing
the spoilage
congealed with a crust
Death’s
now more nourishing
when the dead
are mere dust.

Dr T.P. Wilkinson writes, teaches History and English, directs theatre and coaches cricket between the cradles of Heine and Saramago. He is author of Unbecoming American: A War Memoir and also Church Clothes, Land, Mission and the End of Apartheid in South Africa. Read other articles by T.P..