As part of Muri’s NPM challenge, I have written an IRREGULAR ODE. I recalled an ode I wrote a few years ago, a sonnet entitled How Do I Love Cheese? and considered re-posting it. But it no longer rang true, as the situation in my body is different these days, age having relegated me to the ranks of the lactose intolerant. So rather than venerating cheese, I shall sing the praises of my new bestie:



Since the day Dairy turned on me,
you have been my rock and salvation
She stirred up an intestinal ruckus and
you marched straight into the battle zone,
neutralizing her weapons
and hammering out a peace treaty
worthy of a Nobel Prize

You have rescued me from a lifetime
of embarrassment and shame:
eating pizza, then excusing myself to the john
thrice during a single episode of Law and Order,
asphyxiating subsequent lavatory users
in a lingering cloud of Glade,
blaming the dog for crop dusting

You’re cheap enough for average Joes
and available over-the counter
in every size from the mammoth bottle
to the individually-wrapped singlet
You’re small and discreet,
caplet-shaped and easy to swallow
You are virtually free of side effects

You make the impossible possible
Half-n-half in my coffee
Milk on my cereal
Cheese on my burger
New England Clam chowder
Redi-Whip on my pumpkin pie
Even ice cream sandwiches!

Lactaid, you are my hero!


  1. churchmousie April 14, 2022 / 10:13 am

    So very sorry that you have been smitten by lactose intolerance. So thankful that you have something to win the fight for joyous living against it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 14, 2022 / 11:43 am

      Thanks, Churchmousie. I feel lucky, sort of. There are far worse things a person could be afflicted with, and so many you can’t do anything about. At least if I keep Lactaid at the ready, I can still enjoy some of my old faves.


  2. Tippy Gnu April 14, 2022 / 12:17 pm

    I feel sorry for the Lactosians, as there are so many people who are intolerant of them. But at least there’s a pill for it. Aren’t you glad you don’t live on a dairy farm?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 14, 2022 / 12:31 pm

      I liked them just fine for years, Tippy, and then BOOM! They decide to torment my stomach. Lactaid goes a long way toward peaceful resolution, but there are still things I can’t tolerate. I can’t order from my favorite pizza place anymore; Lactaid doesn’t work on their cheese. And if I overdo it, (say, quiche for dinner with a side of mac and cheese, and cheesecake for dessert), I will be in trouble no matter how much Lactaid I take.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Tippy Gnu April 14, 2022 / 12:57 pm

        That’s strange how this would happen so suddenly. I guess we all have to learn to deal with our various afflictions that come with aging.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. murisopsis April 14, 2022 / 10:36 pm

    Hehe! Joan this is a beautiful ode to a real intestinal hero (or is that a hero that grants intestinal fortitude?). Anyway I know many who suffer the same intolerance… and I can attest that without that magic pill riding in a car or being in any confined space would be torture!! I applaud your delightful ode!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 15, 2022 / 8:10 am

      Thanks, Muri. Lactaid really is a miracle, in it’s way. I’m told mammals stop producing the enzyme lactase after they’re weaned, as they no longer need milk. Humans are different, I guess, but our mammalian roots kick in, causing our lactase levels to drop to some degree as we age. Hubby and I used to watch Big Bang Theory and one of the characters was lactose intolerant, the one whose girlfriend worked (ironically) at Cheesecake Factory.


  4. joyroses13 April 15, 2022 / 5:40 pm

    Sorry about being Lactose Intoloerant, has to be tough, but am impresed with the poem you made out of it! Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 15, 2022 / 5:57 pm

      Thanks, JR. I work around it as best I can. Dairy Queen now makes a vegan Dilly Bar. Coconut milk based, perfect summer treat.


  5. judyrutrider April 15, 2022 / 8:53 pm

    Whoa! I didn’t know one’s body could betray one so cruelly. Coffee without cream? No way Jose.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan April 15, 2022 / 9:33 pm

      With Lactaid, some things are still possible. Coffee with cream is one of them.


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