Their Fate In My Shopping Basket

I crumpled the bottle and squashed the box
into a bin marked green to travel far away
I bought organic with the extra packaging
weighing the guilt against the lack of sprays

Flouride in the water, cleared within alum
chlorine cleansed and bacteria free
versus water from a spring in Tipperary
in a bottle that will never die or rot

The apple is local from a family farm
but the caring privileged inheritance is
trees sprayed with chemicals
to make it perfect for display.

The organic fruit has been produced
in a foreign land, clocking up food miles
increasing carbon footprint on the journey hers
but more bees survive due to their production.

The meat is the result of methane load outbursts
from a field down the road
warming the globe and melting the poles
but the soya alternative has travelled
for a week, from lands cleared
where once was a forest uncut.

Standing in the middle aisle
my mind clouded, between recycled
and forest friendly paper
that will clean my dirty bum.

Checking ingredients for palm oil
supporting local producers because they are
or buy the Dutch bio grown to save the soil
fate of future generations 
held in balance of
my consumer preference.

-Ciaran Burke


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