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In Praise of Teeth by Jessy Randall
published in Volume 6, Issue 1 on March 1st, 1999

It’s high time someone said
what we’ve all been thinking.

Teeth
are far superior to silverware;
they get the job done
quicker, and we carry them
whether we want to or not.

At lunch today, in the wilderness
of the basement food court, I tried
to saw my chicken burrito in half,
but could not force the plastic knife
through, one-handed, reading my book.

Teeth can do it.

And why bother with plates, and trays,
and napkins? Why must we have
all this paraphernalia,
when all we want to do is eat?

And so I sing in praise of teeth.
Next time you’re feeling sorry for yourself,
just think of the hard white rocks
inside your mouth, and rejoice! Nothing
is impossible.

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