Negative Capability Press is planning an issue on food. We love to eat: fried chicken, oysters—fried, stewed, or nude. We love recipes and menus and cookbooks. Among our favorites are Eugene Walter’s Termite Hall Cookbook, Pat Conroy’s . . . and Eat, Memory: Great Writers at the Table, edited by Amanda Hesser. We have issued a call for stories, essays and poems related to experiences with cooking and with food here.
Here is a poem by Joseph L. Whitten from Learning To Tell Time, published by Negative Capability Press.
Lunch At The Tea Room
Quiche, a foreign word to Grandpa, I’m sure:
eggs, broccoli, cheese, baked in a pastry crust.
Eggs for him, yes, and plenty of them fried in bacon greese,
and for breakfast, not for lunch
or dinner, mountain folks’ noonday meal.
Odd I should remember him just now
in this restored train depot in Crossville, Tennessee,
where Gail and I lunched on quiche with garden salad
and chocolate layer cake for dessert.
I study the bill, thinking of Grandpa Hawkins,
and know it’s more than he could have hoarded
during the entire Great Depression years.
Such extravagance pulls up guilty
thoughts of ancestors and their days of toil.
I had the server my credit card
to pay the $64.52 bill
and ask for a to-go box.