Rice with Stew

Whenever the scent of chili pepper enters my nostrils,

my mouth waters like a pavlovian dog.

I know I will chew silently, joyfully, and voraciously  

on soft grained rice smothered with dripping

tomato stew and fresh hen.


Before a thought enters my mind,

the bowl is nearly empty, with only

licks of stew left. 


Years ahead, when I eat this,

memories will conjure up:

My mother by the stove,

diced peppers, onions, and meat on the wooden board,

a cupboard scented with thyme,

the sounds of rice boiling,  

All suddenly deafened by my sobbing 


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