Elegy on an Asian American Wok

Have the chef bring me something not on the menu.
I tire of General Tso’s or Tao’s or Tsao’s chicken;
why cubed white meat, when I like sinew?

I don’t want my sauces blander, thicker nor sweeter.
I want the Szechuan chicken (no carrots nor bell peppers) and extra white rice.
No, no. I’m not picky. I still want the fortune cookie, mint and orange slice.
How can I play the lotto without my lucky numbers?

No, I’m not into the chicken satay nor the Peking duck;
the skin just isn’t crispy enough.
Though the shrimp fried rice is tempting, I’ll stick with what’s steamed.
I haven’t even ordered, so what’s the hurry?
Fine, extra lemon grass and ginger in my curry.

I want larb, but only raw and extra spicy,
and nowhere near this wok.
Really? You have liver, chicken feet and pickled greens?
Get me a to-go box, the lunchroom tomorrow will be a scene.
I’ll skip your baby bok choy,
I prefer mine slightly bitter like my women.

Don’t trick me, I know this broccoli
isn’t gai lan; it’s sai lan fa.
Can’t feign the taste of bone marrow and beef knuckles in my pho. No bouillon,
not in my Little Saigon.
Who says this carrot is foreign daikon?
Once a while, I’ll go with tiger prawns (not like Rocky Mountain oysters)
and the beef of Mongols.

Out of ingredients? Hmm, I’ll take the chop suey.
Okay, give me the Chinese chicken salad, extra wonton strips and mandarin oranges,
but do you have balsamic vinegar? The sesame won’t do.
Your fish sauce is rancid? I’ll take a jar to go.
How much cream cheese is in the Crab Rangoon?
No, I don’t want real crab. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
I miss mother’s sticky rice with shredded coconut and frozen corn.
Fine, screw it. I’ll take a sake bomb and the California roll.

When we go to Uncle Benihana’s for steak, I like Johnny Blue while we’re queued up.

A blend’s a blend.

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