Culinary Delights, by Tom Ryther

Preparing my dinner,
pouring hearty tomato soup,
into a stainless steel pot,
to heat.

Oh so carefully (obsessively?)
spooning the last remnants to that soup
into the pot (waste not, want not).

This act,
penetrates my consciousness
with my father’s being.
He, his essence,
woven through me.

This pricking,
surfacing memories,
in recalling his frugality,
through mine.

His telling me of those times as a boy
in Northern Minnesota,
during the depression,
when the meaning of “hard”
was also woven through them.

Commonly,
lunch,
for the almost cheaper by the dozen siblings
(10 ultimately),
was,
cold oatmeal sandwiches.
cold… oatmeal… sandwiches…

This culinary delight,
for their times,
the creative efforts
of Edna, Dad’s mother.

My god – how spoiled we are,
in our dominant popular culture,
in the good ole U.S. of A.

We, with our strawberries
from South America
in December,
and Alaskan Crab
flown special,
to Columbus, Ohio,
for a party of politicians.

How would Dad,
his farm family,
have viewed this
provision of such sustenance…?

How do those
who cannot indulge
in such pleasures,
view this, us…?

Marie Antoinette said,
“let them eat cake”.,
allowing her to know a new meaning of “hard”.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs representative said,
back in the late 1800’s,
concerning the natives not having adequate,
frankly anything,
“let them eat grass”.
He, found on that Minnesota prairie,
scalped,
his mouth stuffed with grass.

Pogo said,
“we have met the enemy
and it is us”.

Admiral Stockwell said,
Who am I,
and why am I here”?

The envelope please…
The answer is…

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