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Thread: Making a Toasted Cheese Sandwich

  1. #1
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    Making a Toasted Cheese Sandwich

    The following is a loosey-goosey piece of free verse that I daresay may be older than many of our NitLetters. Dating back to 1999 (yep–2 decades), it was the result of speculation that a topic of a poem can be just about anything, no matter how mundane.



    Making A Toasted Cheese Sandwich


    When you have nothing
    the philosophers tell you
    to be happy with
    the little you have
    take delight in the simple things
    philosophers say

    Well, I have a slice of cheese
    and two slices of bread
    what could be simpler
    or cheaper
    than that

    I'd prefer wheat bread
    healthy whole grain
    with a hearty bite
    and some Swiss
    neutral like the country
    and therefore harmless
    though subtly nutty
    and not as pully
    as mozza-pizza
    but snappy enough
    to melt into what
    product researchers call
    "mouth-feel"

    What I have
    is a square
    of store-brand synthetic
    processed stuff
    that's tasteless
    and bland
    and therefore one
    hundred per cent
    American

    imposed between a pair
    of machine-cut sponges
    to pop into
    the toaster-oven


    That's right I'm making
    this the old-fashioned way
    not like the greasy-spoon staple
    drowned in margarine
    and slapped on the same griddle
    that burned burgers
    through three shifts
    and called
    "grill" cheese

    Nor would I be crazy
    enough to consider
    the wacky Heloise-style
    hint of wrapping it in foil
    and cooking it at the same time
    as doing the ironing
    nobody's that efficient

    and besides -- what about the crumbs
    escaping from the Reynolds' Wrap armour
    and mixing with the
    inadvertently-washed Kleenex
    in the pockets
    of your pants?

    (As if anybody still irons these days!)

    No, when it comes to
    toasting cheese sandwiches
    I'm a purist though not a true
    vegan, having been known
    to consume your occasional fish
    the communal omelet
    and of course
    cheese

    So I'm standing guard
    in front of the countertop appliance
    that's like an abandoned wife
    whose husband left her for
    a younger, flashier microwave
    and I'm watching the coil
    turn red
    in embarrassment or anger

    You'd think I were some snooty
    chef from the Cordon Bleu
    fussing over a feast
    for some fastidious dignitary
    the way this social-climbing sandwich
    has commanded my attention

    But you've got to watch
    you've got to know
    the precise moment
    when to flip

    or one side burns
    and the other side stays pale
    and the cheese, inside,
    doesn't even warm up,
    let alone melt

    and you can bet
    somebody will complain
    about the crumbs
    on the floor

    you've got to watch

    Though I'd much prefer
    to look out the window
    and see the sky stretch
    and change into its evening wear
    that isn't quite basic black
    and definitely not blue

    and in the brush to catch
    a glimpse of furry beings
    sniffing the twilight air
    while hustling for a meal
    they can afford
    to be curious and brave
    now that it's dusk

    and the sportsmen have all
    gone home or to a diner
    for a quick beer
    and a burned burger
    There are no hunters left

    except for Orion
    amid the sharp and witty stars
    and the Moon
    rumored to be made of green cheese
    playing Toastmaster to the night
    and raising a shimmering glass
    that spills a silver spotlight
    over the dance floor of the field

    which in the cold morning
    will melt into bits
    of glittering confetti,
    these frosty crumbs
    of moonlight in the grass

    with the Cosmos taking its
    simple delight
    in the things it has
    both little and big
    though when you're talking
    about the Universe
    and its timeless banquet
    size doesn't matter

    while I'm inside --
    in the kitchen --

    toasting cheese

  2. #2
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    For some reason I couldn't edit the post, just to add the link to the companion piece:

    http://www.online-literature.com/for...40#post1366240

  3. #3
    Registered User tailor STATELY's Avatar
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    Love the poem

    What I have
    is a square
    of store-brand synthetic
    processed stuff
    that's tasteless
    and bland
    and therefore one
    hundred per cent
    American
    ... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_cheese

    You'd have made G.K. Chesterton proud waxing on cheese.

    Now off for the companion piece !

    Ta ! (short for tarradiddle),
    tailor STATELY
    tailor

    who am I but a stitch in time
    what if I were to bare my soul
    would you see me origami

    7-8-2015

  4. #4
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    "Sharp and witty stars..." & equating the countertop appliance to "an abandoned wife" are particularly memorable in this little gem. Much enjoyed.

    Live and be well - H

  5. #5
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    "You'd think I were some snooty
    chef from the Cordon Bleu
    fussing over a feast
    for some fastidious dignitary
    the way this social-climbing sandwich
    has commanded my attention"


    NO one can deny, that is exactly how it feels. The waiting should be delegated.

    Such a fun read, much enjoyed! I love the constant impulse of thought freely flowing from one peculiar comparison to the next. It was like being in the mind of a overly analytical, obsessive, and wittingly bitter eccentric. So fun!

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