Poem - Tomato Boxes



I miss the old tomato boxes

great for lighting the fire, easily broken

or stacking with papers of less significant importance

peeping in at them to see their humour

something from the tv licence people, good luck with that

or her majesty's revenue commissioners

junk mail from the jesus freaks

kept just to ridicule in moment like this

and christmas, birthday and Other cards

to remind oneself of that instant of delivery

the perhaps green or red or white envelope

trembling to be opened

the tomato box pining for company

the poet smug in a world yet alive

all around a successful partnership

human and humble tomato box

destroyed by simply cardboard



More by this Author


Paul Edmondson profile image

Paul Edmondson 5 years ago from Burlingame, CA

Always happy to see a poem by you. Tomato boxes do make excellent kindling. The agriculture food packing industry has changed a ton. At some point -1970? - they switched from packing food in a shed to field packing right as it's cut. I suspect that is when cardboard took over. But they still needed wood pallets to place all the boxes on and for the fork lofts to load and unload. Now for an exceptional beach fire, nothing is quite as glorious as a stack of pallets going up in flames.

sligobay profile image

sligobay 5 years ago from east of the equator

Drax: we all eventually become obsolete but don't mind if we're in good trashy company. You have an interesting follower who precedes my comment. I am insignificant as a plastic milk crate.

maven101 profile image

maven101 5 years ago from Northern Arizona

Ode to a Tomato box...Only Drax would come up with such...Inventive, entertaining, and skillfully written...Voted up, way up...

I used to pull the slats from these crates and use as a plank for BBQ salmon after soaking them in water for a while...spray with olive oil, close the lid, 10 minutes and enjoy the wood-smoked salmon with a bottle of ice cold Guinness...Larry

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

@Paul... thanks very much :-) the missing tomato boxe is one of those changes that creeps up on you... here in the North of Ireland we have monstrous bonfires with pallets every 12th of July where the other side ;-) celebrate a victory from 1690... I must make a hub about that this week... !!

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

@sligobay... thanks for the comment, this reminds me of something by Omar Khayyám;-

The Worldly Hope men set their Hearts upon

Turns Ashes -- or it prospers; and anon,

Like Snow upon the Desert's dusty Face

Lighting a little Hour or two -- is gone.

we are all insignificant yet the words we leave behind may bring solace or joy to just one... what more payment is required...

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

@Larry... thanks a lot for the great comment... I was looking around the chaos of my office and thinking it would be nice to have half a dozen tomato boxes.. the recipe sounds great as well !!! there must be someone somewhere still using wooden tomato boxes...

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

I did have a comment here from a user "Fashion" which I removed since it goes to an external blog link... this is contrary to the Hubpages TOS and is irritating to say the least...

prashant angiras profile image

prashant angiras 5 years ago from shimla(india)

i loved the old tomato boxes..it must be fun to burn them...

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

Prashant... well they were useful since they were easy to break and to light so I suppose it was a form of recycling... thanks for the comment...

Leptirela profile image

Leptirela 5 years ago from I don't know half the time

HEH! You just made me smile

you know, I never wrote a poem about

a tomato box :)but I wish I did

am either empty with imagination

or just not so original .

I love it. thumbs up

profile image

jami l. pereira 5 years ago

Voted up and awesome , ive never seen tomatoe boxes like those before , interestingly enough , I bet there would be pplenty of uses for it after its tomatoes are gone ..thanks for the read !:)

akune profile image

akune 5 years ago from Surrey, England, United Kingdom

Neat. Translucent.

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

@Leptirela... thanks... it is my first tomato box poem so there may be more... never admit you are empty to imagination...:-) the Muse speaks to all in different voices so we all can be original in our own time...

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

@Jami... ah you have led a sheltered life not to have seen these tomato boxes... they are wild and in the half light of the evening around the little fire made from their skins there is poetry to be had... :-)

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

@Akune... thank you for the great comment... :-)

SimpleGiftsofLove profile image

SimpleGiftsofLove 5 years ago from Colorado

I love this poetry of yours...I am Italian and wish I had ever seen a real tomato box, regardless, your work made a connection in my heart..Look forward to more!

Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

SimpleGiftsofLove... such a lovely comment, thanks very much, it is always a great boost to receive a positive encouraging comment since writing for me is very much a solitary pursuit and I sit alone wondering sometimes does the Muse ask too much from me... Thanks Drax !!

vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

I miss the old tomatoe boxes. Used them for night stands and book cases. I love the picture of the tomatoe box and your poem is brilliant!

You gave me a connection to a lovely part of my past that I would otherwise have completely ignored. I thank you so much!

I look forward to reading more of your delectable hubs.


Drax profile image

Drax 5 years ago from NYC.... Author

vocalcoach... thanks very much, I never really missed tomato boxes until I thought of the poem and now I seem to need them more often... :-)

Rosana Modugno profile image

Rosana Modugno 4 years ago from 10th Kingdom

I very much like your writing style. Enjoyed this poem. Thank you :)

Drax profile image

Drax 4 years ago from NYC.... Author

Hi Rosana... sorry for the slow response, I seem to have missed a whole series of comments. Thank you very much for the nice comment, it is great to receive encouragement and it really helps keep the focus on trying to write more and work less.

sligobay profile image

sligobay 4 years ago from east of the equator

Hey Drax- I thought that they loaded daisies in the gun muzzles a dozen years ago. Sorry to hear the "other side" piling pallets still burns so deeply. Maven's BarBQ salmon with a cold guinness sounds yummy.

Cardboard is a flavorless modern substitute for pine crating as is coal a poor substitute for the acrid aroma of turf.

I view the hearth as an acceptable substitute for the tribal bonfire but feel that civilization has deprived the people of the open fire which is our essential nature. Further deny the masses of their gathering places and divide and conquer the people into a workforce subdued by the factory smoke stack and now the nuclear cooling plumes. Cheers.

Drax profile image

Drax 4 years ago from NYC.... Author

@Gerry.. there is no substitute for sitting staring into at an open hearth with the turf well banked up glowing red... I had one of these myself once upon a time... and will have again in the fullness of time...

sligobay profile image

sligobay 4 years ago from east of the equator

"18 USC § 3 - Accessory after the fact

Whoever, knowing that an offense against the United States has been committed, receives, relieves, comforts or assists the offender in order to hinder or prevent his apprehension, trial or punishment, is an accessory after the fact.

Except as otherwise expressly provided by any Act of Congress, an accessory after the fact shall be imprisoned not more than one-half the maximum term of imprisonment or (notwithstanding section 3571) fined not more than one-half the maximum fine prescribed for the punishment of the principal, or both; or if the principal is punishable by life imprisonment or death, the accessory shall be imprisoned not more than 15 years."


So, participation in the cover-up of torture, a crime, is also a crime - or would be if the law was actually applied to those in power.

The USA government has been an accessory after the fact to countless crimes globally. Happy Christmas. Gerry

Drax profile image

Drax 4 years ago from NYC.... Author

@Gerry... I have been down this road on countless platforms and no-one wants to know, if you look at our own situation. It is costing somewhere between €500m-€700m a month to service our debt and meanwhile all the graduates, the highly skilled and talented people are leaving Ireland at the rate of about 2,000 a week - 500 from the North 1,500 from the South.

Meanwhile people sit complacent at their nice tv and lap up all the propaganda that they can eat.

I mention this because we look at things with a jaundiced eye, just not simply believing every word we are fed. So when we are not rebelling then there is simply no hope whatsoever for the Americans who stand in fear of their Government and their law enforcement agencies. They do not travel, they do not participate in world events, unless except for their armies, they are all over the place... :-(

sligobay profile image

sligobay 4 years ago from east of the equator

Drax: I lived in Ireland for four years where I must have learned to look at things with a "jaundiced eye". When I arrived in Ireland in 2006 I believed "my country, right or wrong". When I returned in 2010, America was a different country or I had learned critical thinking while abroad. I was not quite as gullible. Fear is the pervasive feeling here. This is not a free country anymore. What we have become, is a crying shame. Just because I am paranoid doesn't mean that they are not after me. Merry Christmas.

Drax profile image

Drax 4 years ago from NYC.... Author

Gerry... I agree with you 100%, the fear is pervasive, the problem is how can it be changed since the average citizen is a decent human being..

BTW paranoia saved me.. Merry Christmas !

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.

    Click to Rate This Article