Beautiful Things

It’s February.  Let’s talk about love.

I love love.  Here’s a list of things I love right now:

1) Poetry

I’ve been reading a lot of poetry lately.  No particular reason, except maybe that I’ve not had a lot of time, and poems can be read in spurts; digested in bits.

After a love affair with English poets; 17th and 18th century verse; I fell in love with the Americans — with Edna St Vincent Millay in particular.  Her work is feminine but assertive.  Accessible — but a little quirky.  Distinctly American; obviously Northeastern, with a reverence for the outdoors.

millay_portrait

Check out the Millay Society website if you’re not familiar with her.  The poem of hers that rattles my soul over and over again is a love poem called “Modern Declaration“:

I, having loved ever since I was a child a few things, never having 
     wavered
In these affections; never through shyness in the houses of the rich or in the
     presence of clergymen having denied these loves;
Never when worked upon by cynics like chiropractors having grunted 
     or clicked a vertebra to the discredit of those loves;
Never when anxious to land a job having diminished them by a conniving 
     smile; or when befuddled by drink
Jeered at them through heartache or lazily fondled the fingers of
     their alert enemies; declare

That I shall love you always.
No matter what party is in power;
No matter what temporarily expedient combination of allied interests 
     wins the war;
Shall love you always.

2) Cooking

I’m learning to cook.  Some meals are more successful than others (see, e.g., the Wretched Pork Chop Disaster of 2013).  Korean Chicken Lettuce Wraps with Rice Noodles were a hit.  Five Spice Hanger Steak was a hit.  Chicken and Dumplings was a Hit.

IMG_1093

The point, I think, is that I love making space for this in my life.  I am oft-accused of making snap judgments — and I had long-ago written off cooking as something for others.  But I have always been inspired by Strand’s remarkable meals; I am constantly in awe of what Kat M. posts in her Friday Food Round-Up.  I love having these remarkable friends in my heart as I sometimes struggle through this thing that is so important to me to try.

3) Wearing glasses

Boys seldom make passes at girls who wear glasses.  Which is fine by me.

Would you ever have LASIK surgery?  In a word: NO.

op_denison_mbk

4) Love Songs

My passion for love songs cannot be understated, and I’m known for becoming weepy 0ver the dreadfully cheesy ones.  But there’s one I adore; one I cherish; one with a little bit of quirk that I think more people should love.

Beware: as much as I may love this, watching David Byrne “dance” is like staring into the sun.  Don’t do it for a long period of time — you may sear your retinas.

5) Cheese

Not even cheese.

kraft%20singles%20american

Kraft American Singles, I just can’t quit you.

2 Comments

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  1. The way this song is seared into my brain is probably fairly terrible. But who doesn’t want a face with a view? Try Shawn Colvin’s cover — not the same, but v. strong.

  2. You should really know that the first measure of excellence in the M kitchen is whether or not I successfully Windex the things that raw meat manages to touch. Next measure: flavor. Will send you a Kat’pron Box as part of your parcel. And yes, I realize as I write this that Kat’pron sounds like a pharmaceutical. Be excited.

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