Tuesday, November 28, 2006

A Recipe

After a decade of take out
I had three cooking lessons
to unlock the mystery of
Indian food.

I held the salt in my hand
to feel the weight
tried to replicate the
heft of mustard seed
in the crook of my palm.
I hoped the voices of
Indian aunties would
whisper secrets
passed through generations
reaching across the continents
floating into my slick kitchen
breaking through the modern hum
of the silver dishwasher.

I want stories from
across the ocean
from the dusty fires
and the banks of the Ganges
I want the ancient pot
and the mortar and pestle
dented and nicked.
This is the magic I need
added to my airtight
tupperware and shiny steel pot.

I will never have this.

But I can reach a fingertip
across the geography of the world
and learn the taste
of one small village.
I'll carry it home
like buried treasure.


Blogger Deezee said...

oh, I envy your learning of Indian cooking and love how you share the tale...

10:00 PM  
Blogger jen said...

i hope the aunties will pass along secrets too.

and carry me back to their villages.

it is SO hard to wait a whole week to see what you come up with next.

I LOVE this poem.

11:04 PM  
Anonymous susanna said...

You write with spice and colour, Emily! Beautiful work!

PS: Have you ever seen the film, Bride and Prejudice? The dvd has an optional feature where the director's mom and grandma (or auntie?) teaches her to make a traditional Indian dish. It's a hoot to watch.

5:22 PM  
Blogger twitches said...

Food poems are always the best - there's something sensual about cooking.

5:46 PM  
Blogger Penny said...

Wow. That was a tasty poem, to say the least. Well done. Jen sent me - glad I came!

8:05 PM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

is when?


7:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oooh- I like this one! I hope the food has turned out as splendid as the poem!

5:46 PM  

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