Child Labor


My wife brings home a jar of Nutella
From the Supermarket.
And each time you spread Nutella
You spread billions of acres of melanin
Of little boys who work in Cocoa plantations
On your conscience.

[And that thought suffices to keep you alive]

Knowing that something inside of you is eclipsed
By child-labor. When a little child who should
Be in school, is plucking cocoa fruits
To make jars of chocolate products.

And the melanin-wiped conscience
Will grope in the dark trying to escape
The stranglehold of chocolate.

Chocolate was supposed to indulge, to be a dark fantasy.
And not be a litmus test for your conscience.

Yet how acidic, how sour, is Child Labor
To the indicator strips
Of your innermost sanctum?


Author: meandererworld (Dilantha Gunawardana)

Dr Dilantha Gunawardana is a molecular biologist who graduated from the University of Melbourne. He moonlights as a poet. His poems have been accepted/published in Forage, American Journal of Poetry, Kitaab, Eastlit and Ravens Perch. He mixes science with poetry for a living, when what matters is the expression of both DNA and words into something serendipitous. Although an Australian citizen, Dilantha is domiciled in Sri Lanka, his country of birth.

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