Day 6 of 30: Global Poetry Writing Month and National Poetry Writing Month
Today's NaPoWriMo challenge is to write a poem about food.
My inspiration comes from a delightful sister, a world wanderer, who I met in India. We were both traveling by ourselves and became fast friends during the time we spent at Villa River Cat in Goa. With a shared passion for the sea and good food, we hung out at places along the Arabian Sea eating grilled garlic mussels at the spectacular French restaurant The Plage and piña coladas at Marbela Beach. We shared so much: laughter, stories, and dreams of "organizing our lives", but the best part of our friendship was the long silences between us as we stared out at the sea.
How lucky was I to snap this iPhone photo just as she placed the plate on the table?
“She Was from Moscow”
The birthday treats
Wearing orange Shanghai
Silk, her hair up in an Oriental bun.
The scent of roses.
The red ones, which she didn’t like,
Floated in a bowl on the bamboo table.
She gathered together long-stemmed
Ivory ones, the butter-colored ones,
a bit brown on the edges, but fragrant,
And put them in glass vases
All around the terrace.
Come, taste my birthday sweets!
she said, smiling like a tango dance as she took them
out of the box, arranged them on the plate.
We cut them in tiny squares, a mosaic,
and shared them at brunch.
It wasn’t because I was American
And she was Russian
And we were in India drinking tea on
The anniversary of the day she was born.
It was because I had never known the salty taste
Of red caviar exploding on the tongue
And she had never known a writer
And we both loved the sea
More than we loved a man or the land.
“Isn’t it funny how we humans need our bodies to get around?”
Each breath she took
lifted the scar on her chest where doctors once
took out her heart to fix it.
Do you know what happiness is?
she asked, turning to look at me.
Happiness is having enough food to eat, and someone to feed.
© Kat Shamash, April 6, 2016