Shocking The Natives

Poem By Sallie Howson

You’ve worked hard
Studied well
The frequent slips
Of early years
Are never seen
Your face registers horror
At the very mention
Of going barefoot,
You declare
Only filthy beasts
Can live without
The perfect breakfast
Is coffee and brioche
At a local bar.
It really is!
And it would never
Cross your mind
To serve apple sauce
With pork.
Those English barbarians
Put jam on their turkey
And the Germans,
The heathens,
Pour yoghurt
Over their salad.
Che sacrilegio!
Everyone knows
Sweet and savoury
Don’t mix
Except for
Squash risotto.

That could explain why
Tourists brains have been fuddled
Into thinking it’s ok
To swim in the sea before May,
Just ’cos it’s a boiling hot day.

When small
Your children were never hatless
Or even allowed to sweat
There might have been “ giro d’aria”
And then they’d have caught their death.

Then for some reason you blow it
You throw it all away.
After 30 years of conformity
And subjection to the superior knowledge
Of the Italian minds
You fancy a cappuccino
After lunch.
The restaurant hushes
The waitress turns pale,
Some knowing looks are exchanged
And then you hear it
That fateful phrase,
“Questi stranieri non capiscono niente.”
These foreigners understand nothing.

Comments about Shocking The Natives

Just love that is how you tell a story Magnifico
Great (inter) national touch here. The title suggests something more tribal, but in essence that's what it still is. It's all completely valid. S x
Have an 'All Day Breakfast' and really screw them up! Somebody I've forgotten once said 'If you want to eat well in England have breakfast three times a day'! Ez
Haven't been to Italy, but this poem is fun and carries you along with every pleasant scent of food and coffee and personality.

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