A friend brought me the most beautiful onions I’ve ever seen with papery cream outer layers and firm juicy insides. They chopped up beautifully, adding the perfect zing to tuna fish, soup, and our favorite marinara sauce. They also reminded me of my youth. My artist mother often got so engrossed in her painting that she forgot dinnertime was approaching. So, to give her a few extra minutes to extricate herself from her project, she’d chop up an onion and let it gently sauté. This way my sister and I would think dinner was on the way, even if it wasn’t quite yet. It worked like a charm every time.
Recently, like my mother, I put some onions on to sauté. But, instead of giving me those few extra minutes to wrap up my writing project, those onions inspired a poem. To use my teapot analogy, I wrote the following little poem in a frenzy of paper scraps at the kitchen counter, while simultaneously chopping and sautéing onions for dinner.
ODE TO AN ONION
“Oh, pungent, pungent onion,”
Cook slices, dices, sighs.
“Why is it that your skin is thin,
Yet I’m the one who cries?”