I think this is a piece critiquing the almost religious practice of consumerism in our society today. Firstly you mention the sacrifice of minds and the the dehydration of fruit, suggesting ritual sacrifice followed by a sense of moral decay through the image of the machines for draining the "juice" from fruit.
Secondly we find reference to the soul and a vague allusion to heaven in the idea of the "great fluorescent lighting store / above." This suggests an upward struggle of each individual for this ultimately commercial entity above us.
In the next stanza there is little religious imagery, leaving me to suspect that the speaker is moving on to a harsh reality in which there are no "pearly gates" at the end of the road on which he/she has embarked.
The "cavity-laden existence" acts both as an expression of the candy-filled life of this particular child and as a metaphor for the often empty life he/she has chosen in his/her devotion to commercialism.
The sticky hands likely, at face value, allude to the abundance of candy obtained through commercial means. They bare some resemblance to blood on the hands of a killer alerting us to his guilt.
The rubber stamp kinda stumps me... Perhaps it has something to do with a teacher telling this child he will go somewhere, through some congradulatory stamped assignment, or perhaps it has to do with mass marketing profiling the child as a good target for advertising.
Finally, the fortune cookie may act to tie the religious undertones in the beginning of the poem with the harsh reality in its latter half. The fortune cookie is both something we know to be random, but also as something signifying the mystical ideas of luck and magic. Perhaps the fortune cookie helps the reader to realize that there is merit in both of the presented ways of looking at the speaker's situation.
On the whole, this was a mighty fine poem, brutally satirical as well.
PS: Hope my "analysis" was close to catching the "real meaning" you wanted us to find.. I look forward to reading other readings of this poem!
"If history is to change, let it change. If the world is to be destroyed, so be it. If my fate is to die, I must simply laugh"
[This message has been edited by fractal007 (01-02-2003 04:53 AM).]