Sunday, June 24, 2012

Bean Snapping

Standing barefoot in my kitchen
Snapping green beans at the sink
I feel the heart tug
of all the women before me
in my family who stood as I now stand.

A quick flick of
fingers and wrist
a small hill of strings and end hulls
build before me.
I recite quietly the names:
Pole Beans, Limas, Shellie,
Crowder Peas, Shucky, Navy,
Pinto and Peas.

I whisper the names:
Nettie Mae, Eloise, Idell,
Ma Sudie, Aunt Veen, Catherine,
Pearl, Carol Anne, Versie,

I see them in my mind,
strong hands, scarred and veined
by outdoor work.
Nails short and clean.
Worn gold bands tight as a pledge,
loose as a promise. 

Feet bare,
firmly planted on the linoleum,
worn wood, rag rug
In front of wash pan, sink,
bowls of water from the well
cistern or faucet.

In the background
the burner hisses
as beads of water
strike the glowing heat.
Sounds and smells stretching
through eons,
Endless summers
of gardens wealth. 

1 comment:

beagleAnnie said...

Great work! I can imagine the loved people in the kitchen.