Food Poetry

The intersection of food and poetry is a natural one: both are subjects that concern themselves with experience, memory, sense, and self. In honor of National Poetry Month, we've asked some of our favorite poets from around the world to share works—each poem in print for the first time overall or in English—that fuse the poetic with the edible.

(Two Untitled Poems) by Dmitri Alexandrovich Prigov A pound of seafood salad
Procured from the delicatessen
Where is the harm in that, I ask--
Hardly need for any confession.
A bit of it I ate myself
And fed my son, my own begotten
With the very same stuff
Then we settled by the glass
Of the transparent window
Like two male pussycats
So that below us life could flow Read the second poem »**
Ben Shadis
Breakfast in Aleppo by Peter Balakian Muhamara, fig jam, zatar,
thin pita like soft parchment. I'm eating earth and air
as I fold it over cracked green olives. Peter Balakian's recent book of poems is Ziggurat (University of Chicago Press, 2010). He teaches at Colgate University.
Ben Shadis
The Sunday Milk-Pudding by VK Sreelesh THEN¿Sundays were bright with milk-pudding
That grandma cooked on her smoky stove,
Where fire ate her time and patience,
That cooked her eyes red and weepy that
Spilled like the seething milk coughing through
The lid that merged with her violent coughs.
...
Read the full poem »
Ben Shadis
september 15, 2001 by Lila Zemborain the fissure in the blue is growing while
reality survives in the voices of children
giving coherence to what's near; the affront in
the corners banishes in an instant the
certainty that passes through cooking pots, the
mood of detergent in clothes being washed
and dried with appropriate technologies terrifies
now even more than the box cutter; how to
prevent the restlessness that's lurking in every
glance? lowering the eyes to examine what
settles in unexpectedly when she sees rain
falling or laughter distracts her by mistake;
...
Read the full poem »
Ben Shadis
Big Bowl by Zhang Er routines of solace
                   \*  
lift up the curtain when entering
                   \*  
on the dinner table, a flowery plastic sheet.
...
Read the full poem »
Ben Shadis