First posted January 2, 2012; augmented today.
I’ve been thinking lately of Barriss Mills, with whom I spent many pleasant afternoons discussing his always future kitchen remodeling plans, and watching him grind coffee in his ancient hand-crank machine, then drinking it with him. After his retirement from his long career of teaching English literature, he spent time rereading all the classics he taught for decades, and discovered he’d missed teaching his students the most important aspect of them: they’re, above all, damned good stories, well told. He’s long since gone now. Concerning poetry, he once told me he’d rather write about cabbages than loftier subjects, which he found rather dreary. It inspired me to write this haiku.
In the refrigerator