“Vichyssoise at Home” by E4024, via Wikimedia Commons.
It’s that time of year again, soup time. This poem, by a brand new contributor (thank you, Scudder!), is about the magic a gardener/cook can create — with only a few of the season’s last offerings and a little imagination.
Too many leeks this year.
A dozen locked in four inches
of frozen, mounded soil, one bin
stacked full in the refrigerator.
And kale stalks like palms
after the hurricane, offering
their small limp fronds before
succumbing to the final freeze.
“Delicious!” is all I can think.
Chicken bones accumulated
in the freezer. Wilted greens
hiding in the other bin. Onions
that won’t make it through
the month—all crying “broth!”
Then add potatoes (with the skin)
throw celery and carrots in.
It is to vichyssoise what
slam poetry is to rhyming
greeting cards. You have to
drink it hot, soak your coarse
bread crust. It’s full of things
that were all but lost,
so ordinary, damaged,
that they seem to have no cost.
* * *
Scudder Parker grew up on a family farm in North Danville, Vermont. He’s been a Protestant minister, state senator, utility regulator, candidate for Governor, consultant on energy efficiency and renewable energy, and is settling into his ongoing work as a poet. He’s a passionate gardener and proud grandfather of four. He and his wife live in Middlesex, Vermont. Scudder has published in Sun Magazine, Vermont Life, Northern Woodlands, Wordrunner, Passager, Eclectica, Twyckenham, Ponder Review, and Crosswinds.