A Poem by Stephen Satterfield

We all gotta eat

Last week I saw a brother shimmy a coconut tree with his bare hands and feet

I watched in awe and a dropped jaw 

With a throbbing heart beat

Probably harder than his

Nothing sharpens the will 

Like the quest of the next meal

We all gotta eat

Standing at the base of the tree he

Drops his head back 

Lets the dreads fall back

He gets into his stance

Spits into his hands and rubs it in

Then begins the ascent

This brother is a tree hugger

Walking vertically and carefully 

Sure of his steps because he must be

Assured of his death 

If he doesn't trust himself 

The day before I ate a coconut

Didn’t give a second thought to

The hardship of the harvest

Just then I lost him in the palms

Lost in my mind where the coconuts go

And where they come from 

The spoils of bravery

For water, charcoal or oil?
The fibrous shells fell from high above 

Hit the sand with a hollow thud

We all gotta eat

For some of us it's a feast

And for others it's a feat 

Stephen Satterfield is a writer, poet and digital media producer. Over the last 13 years he's enjoyed a unique and diverse career in food and beverage, working as a sommelier, restaurant manager, urban gardener and activist. He is also the founder of Whetstone, a forthcoming magazine and web series on food origin and culture. Follow his musings and travels @isawstephen and see his portfolio of local food stories at www.nopalize.com.