Frank Giampietro

Tomorrow I Begin

Tomorrow I eat nothing but bean soup, or else nothing
but Raisin Bran. Yes, tomorrow I shall begin
my great Raisin Bran diet. No more chips for this guy,
no more French fries with mayonnaise,
or frozen wedding cake.
Tomorrow, I eat only things
I can pick up with my thumbs,
only what I can carry in my breast pocket,
only what the astronauts eat.
I shall eat only meat
cooked in a light vinaigrette sauce, only muffins
with one less yolk.
Tomorrow, I will eat only things I can slurp
off the lenses of my glasses with a straw.
Friends will comment on how good I look,
how much I’ve changed since even earlier that day,
how there’s a certain hollowness in my cheeks
they had never noticed before. I will use my lighter body
to do good in the world, I will learn to fly, fly low,
avoiding radar. I will fight white-collar crime and speak
at junior high schools in poor neighborhoods.
I’ll become fluent in Mandarin while commuting to work.
I will dedicate myself to God
and man, offer up my new lightness to His Greatness. I will
have tons of sex, sex with beautiful women, of course,
but also with antelope and panthers.
My lightness will allow me to travel back in time
in the evenings after dinner. If there’s nothing great
on TV, I will do it, travel back, and visit my larger self,
and I will hold him in my arms, but not too long
because he is so darn heavy,
and after I have shushed and rocked my old self to sleep,
I will return to my skinny living room. There
I will begin the diet of my middle period, and grow smaller still.
I will become what I am eating, a shape-shifter, a demigod
a very, very thin, and therefore more confident man.

Frank Giampietro
“Tomorrow I Begin” is from Begin Anywhere (Alice James Books, 2008).