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Sabbath Preparation

"Let water flow over broccoli heads in a Zen-like state"

Published onMar 03, 2024
Sabbath Preparation

Photo by Dainik Tales.

  Ingredients for the Week 
Cooked chicken chopped for Monday. 
Green beans washed, culled and cut for Tuesday. 
Carrot tops twisted off, ends cut and skins peeled for stew on Wednesday. 
Cooked rice fluffed up anticipating a raisin, milk and sugar bath on Thursday. 

Friday Dinner Instructions: 

1.              Use the knife to dig out 
the cauliflower core, break its buds 
into pieces like words 
rivals picked apart  
over the airways last night.  

2.              Peel, slice and dice 
onions and garlic 
like one unravels the layers  
of relationships with kin.  

 3.              Let water flow over broccoli heads 
in a Zen-like state, then shake them  
like a dog does after a bath. Let joy 
enter the kitchen. 

 4.              When hands jerk sharply 
as the peeler shucks the skin 
off four large sweet potatoes, 
consider the strength built  
into each sinew and imagine  
the energy infused by the earth 
into each vegetable. Rejoice. 

5.              As the shredder moves in a steady 
circular motion, keep time with its beat 
as your feet rock back and forth  
across the kitchen floor 
from sink to counter  
to refrigerator and back again, 
a music that can soothe away 
wrinkled brows and the harrowing daily news.  

6.              Mix onion into the shredded 
sweet potato, and brush with egg. 
Line the pie dish, letting your fingertips 
touch the cool gooeyness: 
a memory of mud pies you made 
when life was still filled with play. 

7.              As the oven hums with heat,  
absorbs the liquid, browns 
the sweetness in the potatoes, 
inhale the fragrance  
into shoulder muscles  
that need softening. 

8.              Shudder thyme, basil and paprika  
over vegetables browning 
on the stove before heaping them 
onto the steaming potato pie crust. 
Whip eggs into cold milk, 
pour overtop the vegetable pie 
letting liquid gel seep into crevices,  
emptiness plugged for now. 

9.              As the timer is set,  
the oven door closed, 
let your mind open up, 
anticipate the sunset. 

Margaret Anne Kean received her BA in British/American Literature from Scripps College and her MFA from Antioch University/Los Angeles. Her debut chapbook collection, Cleaving the Clouds, was published by Kelsay Books in 2023. Her work has appeared in Eunoia Review, Anti-Heroin Chic, San Antonio Review, Drizzle Review, EcoTheo Review, Halcyon Days and Tupelo Quarterly. Kean lives in Pasadena, California. 

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