Peanuts

I’d like to smack the grin
right off Mr. Peanut’s face.
I’d like to admonish him
for capturing the hearts of my friends
and leaving me out in the cold.
I’d like to like peanuts,
but my taste buds disagree.

Few people understand.
“Are you allergic?” the crowd inquires,
“will you die if you eat them?”
Questions that invariably pop up.
Predictable reactions
to my predictable reaction.

I can tell the truth and say
“No, I just don’t like them.
Same as you might reject tuna
or sauerkraut or cole slaw,”
but nobody accepts that.
Someone eventually chases me,
an open jar of Jif in their hand.

So I’m required to lie.
“Yes, actually.
If I swallow just the tiniest bit,
my throat swells like a balloon,
I die sobbing tears of blood,
and the peanut assassins
finally have their mark.”

Only then will peanut lovers
(which sometimes seems like
everyone that isn’t me)
leave me alone to sit,
frustrated but unmolested,
in my peanut hater’s closet.

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