Etiquette for Fine Young Cannibals / simone leid

A woman walks into a bar and says
What’s for dinner?
The bartender says
Ma’am, we don’t sell food here
She kicks off her high heels and sits on a stool
What about that bowl of cherries? You
think I’m a fool?
The bartender says
Those aren’t cherries, they’re women we’ve raped
The woman says
You think I’m a fool? I know the difference
between food and rape
Rape is bloody, is hung up in display cases
at the front of restaurants
People walk by and pick out the one
that looks overdone
have the waiters take it to the kitchen
chop it up and serve it with a side of white rice
Ma’am, says the bartender, this is an elite
we don’t deal in dead. All our rapes are 100% guilt free
tiny bite-size murders
dressed in machismo and
left to ferment
in a bed of self-doubt
and silence.


Simone Leid is a poet from Trinidad and Tobago, a Fellow of the Cropper Foundation Creative Writers Workshop and founder of The WomenSpeak Project, an online forum which encourages Caribbean women to tell their stories of surviving violence and discrimination.


  1. Read it about a dozen times. You managed to convey so much in relatively few words.

  2. the side of white rice clinched it for me.

  3. Loved this. I read again and again. Violence conveyed in such a beautiful way. I love the way you address appetite as well. Very thought provoking.

  4. […] You can read samples of the chosen pieces at Tongues of the Ocean including Trinidadian Simone Leid Etiquette for Fine Young Cannibals – which Sweeting describes as “one of the most important pieces in the collection” and […]

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