Lessons Of A Garlic Clove

The dinner dash:
Chop peel slice plop
Sizzle says the chicken
Flip this
Shuffle that
1 2 3 4
Quick! Like a bunny
Hop from one burner to the next
Turn down the veggies
A dash of sea salt here
Pow!
Sprig of basil there
Bang!
You’re getting the hang of this now
Moving to “American Pie” on the radio
Dancing your dinner- But wait
The garlic
You forgot the garlic
Quick quick
Grab a clove and peel, peel
But no
Garlic is not in a hurry
It does not care that onions are browning
Slow down, says garlic
Be patient
You cannot rush this guy
He does not dance to your classic rock
A soft violin
As layer by layer
His pale flesh is exposed
Sharp oily spice
Aromas of earth envelope the kitchen
Wafting into evening eddies of wind
Where it flirts with purple onion
Steamy thoughts of broccoli
Wet portobello mushrooms
Slick buttery kisses
The radio sings on
Chicago, or maybe Credence
But the beat of your feet has changed
That sound is unimportant now
You sway to the notes of a pasta concerto
As you slowly add the milk
1 and 2 and 3 and 4
Breathe
gradually the notes converge
Sweet chords of creamy white
You dip the gleaming silver spoon
Gently, oh so slowly
You bring it to your lips
Rich, smooth
A saxophone’s seduction
Yes, just so
Pour that hot symphony
Into the embrace of awaiting noodles
Watch them entwining passionately
See how the two become one
Feel like a voyeur as you observe a red pepper
Brazenly flashing her scarlet smile
At the back end of asparagus
Lay this aromatic orgy of flavor down softly
On to a white bed of porcelain
Present it with a flourish to your hungry partner
Smile with a secret satisfaction
As you watch him bring it to his lips
“Mmmm,” says he “fresh basil”
But you know
Even as you thank him
It’s not the basil
Not the spices or the simmer
It was garlic that slowed you down
Garlic that made you patient
Garlic made the pasta a poet’s manifesto

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