Chocolate and Vanilla

Some time ago when you were young, an ice cream shop opened up. Even if you weren’t hungry, you followed your friends to the shop. But when the man at the counter asked you to pick a flavor, you said no thanks, I’ve just had dinner.

Some time ago when you were young, this ice cream shop opened up. Some of your friends were crazy for chocolate, so you hanged around there a lot. Every now and then, the man at the stall would ask “chocolate?”, you’d say “no thanks, I just ate”.

Some time later, you got older, and followed your friends to the shop. When they saw you didn’t want a cone of the popular flavor, they were all very shocked. You’ve never had chocolate ice cream? No, I never felt the need.

Some time later, as rumors spread, people started guessing. They said you preferred vanilla, or were just afraid of trying. Yet when they asked if you liked chocolate, you said “I do”. And when they asked if you preferred vanilla, you said “I don’t”. And when they asked for the flavor you prefer, you just couldn’t answer.

Not long ago, you and your friends had some ice cream. When you took a vanilla-flavored one, some people laughed or screamed. But when the next day you had chocolate, people were quite confused. “You like chocolate?” “Well of course, I though I told you so”. You like both vanilla and chocolate, and you can’t pick a favorite. It’s not that you don’t know it yet, or that you’re hungry for two.

And so the days keep going. You sometimes take ice cream, sometimes not, and of all kinds of flavor, some of which you end up disliking. And even if for a day, you settle for chocolate, it doesn’t make your love for vanilla fake.

I believe the metaphor is pretty clear here, but I wrote this poem about bisexuality in one evening in 2016, when I tried explaining how I felt about it to my sister and came up with the ice cream metaphor—because my sister loves ice cream. I think it’s a lot more efficient at making a point because it was written in the second person.