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“apples of nearly six thousand kinds
now number just nine”

A poem about a large pile of odd-shaped tomatoes I stumbled across in France: there is much talk of globalization nowadays - and the pros and cons - but this little experience epitomized to me the cons; the increasing conformity and standardisation of everything from the foods we eat to our very cultures and ways of being.


Simon Rees

Such an assortment of shapes in view,
each one unique, but i know in lieu
of odd tomatoes, the EU permits
only a size and shape which fits
their standards of sameness, and now one finds
that apples of nearly six thousand kinds
now number just nine, while melon trees
bearing over a hundred varieties
have now been reduced to three or four,
while fruits are bigger than ever before
but have never been so bland to the taste,
and this explains why someone in haste
has discarded here in an unwanted heap
this sea of tomatoes a metre deep.



© Copyright 2007 Simon Rees

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