One can be gifted advice anywhere,
even in Byerlies' produce section,
before profuse, gorgeous leaves,
green and red leaf lettuce,
bok choy, bib lettuce, kale,
mustard and collard greens,
radicchio, spinach, water cress,
romaine, mesclun, arugula,
escarole, endive, belgium endive.
If you stand there long enough,
in front of these divine plants,
you may feel what it's like
to be one of them, fresh,
lighted, inspected, staged,
gently sprayed with cooling water,
like the African American lady
and I standing side by side,
looking over these life-filled,
crisp, bountiful greens.
"I think I'm going to buy
mustard greens." I said,
half speaking to myself
and half to the refined, thin
lady standing next to me,
delightfully holding up
and choosing red leaf lettuce.
"I love collard greens.
I cook them all the time,
but I'm not sure how to
cook mustard greens."
"Oh, I do." she smiled.
"I've been cooking them
since I was a child, with my mother,
grandmother, and great grandmother."
"Really?" I stared. How cool!
I pictured her with her mother,
grandmother and great grandmother
all in the kitchen talking, laughing
and cooking mustard greens.
"You need kale, too, to sweeten
up the mustard greens a bit -
one big bunch of mustard greens
to one or two smaller bunches of kale.
Cook them in a little water
for 30 min to 45 min, add butter,
salt and, dear, do you know
what you'll end up with?"
Smiling too, I waited for her description.
"Heaven." she said, somehow, glowing.
"Wow." I said, imagining a plate of celestial,
nutritious, scrumptious, warm mustard greens
and kale. She nodded and walked away
with her giant pile of lettuces and greens.
"Thank you so much! I'll try it!"
I called after her, her light, lemon-hued linen coat
disappearing into the colorful produce.
PS I now cook this recipe, changing it slightly,
using olive oil instead of butter. Also, I cook
one bunch mustard greens and one bunch kale
for 20 -25 minutes - and sometimes even less time, -
adding fresh lemon juice and a little salt at the end.
The outcome, I agree, is Heaven!
Welcome to Four Lines! I have a goal I would like to write at least four lines of poetry or a haiku every day for the rest of my life. I'm excited about this challenge! Also, along with my daily poem, I will be reading at least four lines of another author's poetry. I'll try to include that here also. So I'm thinking - how difficult can it be to read and then write one poem a day? We will see! - Claudia
All poems on this blog, unless noted, are written by Claudia Callaghan.
© 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 Claudia Callaghan
Used only with permission. Please feel free to join Four Lines and request permission.