10 February 2010

Voices and Soul

9 February 2010

by Justice Putnam
Black Kos, Tuesday's Chile Poetry Contributor

Sharing a meal is the sharing of the Heart and Soul. Heart and Soul though, is not some ethereal matter floating above and around the table; it is an ingredient that is emulsified and blended into the very substance of each dish. Acknowledging the tedium of preparing a meal, Lucille Clifton then shows how Heart and Soul are added. How the anguish, pain and redemption of Love and History, Family and Community are flavors and scents that connect The All with Everything. How is Heart and Soul added? It starts with...

cutting greens

curling them around
i hold their bodies in obscene embrace
thinking of everything but kinship.
collards and kale
strain against each strange other
away from my kissmaking hand and
the iron bedpot.
the pot is black.
the cutting board is black,
my hand,
and just for a minute
the greens roll black under the knife,
and the kitchen twists dark on its spine
and i taste in my natural appetite
the bond of live things everywhere.

-- Lucille Clifton

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