Whenever Scott and I eat a simple basic meal, I think of this poem by Gwendolyn Brooks. The sparseness, nakedness, vulnerability, and perseverance of this piece had me the first time I read it several years ago. Last night, as we heated up leftover broccoli cheese soup, opened a few bottles of olives and pickles, and placed this all on our simple table, I began quoting the poem. Scott thought it was sad; I thought it was appropriate. Life goes on -
The Bean Eaters Gwendolyn Brooks, 1917 - 2000
They eat beans mostly, this old yellow pair. Dinner is a casual affair. Plain chipware on a plain and creaking wood, Tin flatware. Two who are Mostly Good. Two who have lived their day, But keep on putting on their clothes And putting things away. And remembering . . . Remembering, with twinklings and twinges, As they lean over the beans in their rented back room that is full of beads and receipts and dolls and cloths, tobacco crumbs, vases and fringes.