Sunday, May 20, 2007

Love Like Salt IV: The Poem

Love Like Salt: An Upma Poem and Possible Riddle
Whose Answer Is Available To Those Who Look Carefully

She thinks, since upma is both flour and salt
That one should be one, and the other the other.

Flour is brown and salt lighter, but that is a pale
Description at best, and one she would like to avoid.

Flour is soft and salt harder, but that only raises
Innuendo's coy head, not her desired sentiment.

Salt is crystal and crystal is pretty and pretty is female --
But flour is nurturant, flour is motherly, female as well.

And she thinks: you are pretty, you could be salt if you wanted;
Each of its faces assigned to an aspect of your
Complicated and captivating mind,

Or you could be flour: sturdy, substantial, fundamental and solid;
In the world of the cookbook, everything good
Would then derive from you.

Or you could be both, the upma itself, substitute for your presence;
Me in the evening, alone but patiently content,
Belly full of your memory.

All of these things are him, or can be, if she tries --
But which is which, and who is who, and how to put them together.

And she's not a poet, and knows it -- her talent is
Wordplay at best, form but not metaphorm.

Not like his; his poems are the smells of cashew and coriander
And flour and salt, of course, that she's stirring even now.

And so, in the kitchen, she promises in silence:
You work out the poetry, and I'll work out the meal.

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