Save the Deli

Siegelman waxes poetic on deli’s decline in Forward

Stanley Siegelman, bard of all verse Jewish in the Forward’s Siegelmania column, weighs in on the death of the deli this weeks poem. Pretty cool:

Decline of the Jewish Deli

We face a cause that’s almost lost,
A gastronomic holocaust!
The deli, home of gourmandise,
Is tottering, upon its knees!
This sanctum of the epicure
No longer is a place secure!

Pastrami lovers everywhere
Are in the throes of deep despair.
They raise their voice in angst and fear
That deli-stores might disappear.

In delis, waiters lie in wait,
Prepared to argue and debate.
’Tis there, midst grease, do the obese
Fall prey to hardened arteries.
No outside activists intrude
In serving Jewish comfort-food.

As chicken soup the patron slurps,
And punctuates the deed with burps,
He contemplates a future dim:
If delis croak, who’ll care for him?

Who’ll serve him kishke, chicken neck,
And all that other kosher dreck?
Some day there could be hell to pay
If he can’t quaff Doc Brown’s Cel-Ray!

Those pickles let the man devour
Before the scene turns truly sour!
Bicarb-of-soda is routine,
A standby of the whole cuisine!

Where do the cognoscenti sup
When delis die, go belly up?
While asking questions such as these,
Let’s eat — and hold the mustard, please!


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