I am but a lowly butter roll,
sitting in this tawdry woven basket,
on this threadbare pink linen napkin
amid only the oily stains of my peers,
in the aftermath of this meal,
to remind me of them.
I don’t know why they call us rolls.
True, if you were to toss me down the aisle
between these chairs and tables, I would roll,
but my shape precludes such action occurring naturally.
I may have begun as a perfectly round ball of dough,
but my time in the fiery furnace has transformed me.
I am a squarish-mushroomy shape,
and square mushrooms don’t roll.
There is only one purpose in life for a butter roll: To be consumed,
most often avant d’entrée, but usually at some point during the meal.
Of course there are customers who take us with them,
pop us in a purse or a pocket, a conveniently packed plastic bag,
presumably to consume après un repas at some later time.
This, however, may never happen.
Some of us are carried home
only to be eventually thrown away,
or fed perhaps to birds. Being torn apart and pecked to death
may sound undesirable, but I assure you,
butter rolls were born to be eaten, some way or another.
Yet what am I now?
Stone cold and stiffening on the way to rock-hard stale.
My outcome narrows quickly to a single possibility:
I will be tossed into a dark, dank trash bag
either to be compacted and composted in some fetid dump,
or burned for energy to fire an electrical power plant.
Sitting here gazing upon the gathering gloom,
I have come to the full realization
that I’ve failed my purpose in life: To be buttered and eaten.
Imagine your own life unfulfilled,
lying upon your worn pink napkin deathbed,
knowing full well that the end is near
and that you’d never done what you were born to do.
I assure you my friend, you would weep with anguish as well.
To never be touched, torn, slathered, and chewed.
You may believe that a butter roll feels no pain,
that a butter roll never cries.
But you would be wrong; I assure you we do.