AN ODE TO AN ONION
The Rev. Dana Prom Smith S.T.D., Ph.D.
An ode to an onion, I chance to write,
Praising its virtues, for this splendid orb
Of goodness full, of taste a tanged delight,
Is a bulb which gives and doesn’t absorb,
Imparting savory flavors to bland
Cuisines. In climes where the growing time flees
Early and starts late they are set in sand
And soil, cold but thawed, snow patched, in degrees
Cold, four months before the last frost in June.
Savored in springtime as green onions slim,
Then summer’s great globes, next the harvest moon
When they’re stored during winter’s interim
So chefs might pluck this genus allium.
Some disparage these white, purple, and taupe
Spheres of leaves spare a core. With tongues numb
They complain, as would a misanthrope,
The taste is too severe, leaving the breath,
After eating so nourishing a root,
With its fumes and vapors reeking of death.
“Ah!” The pilgrim said, “Never dispute
Another’s breath,” because this ancient corm
So varied in taste from pungent to sweet,
So laden with life, would a meal transform,
Making it fit for a person complete.
Throughout the year depending on one’s food
There’s always an onion to fit one’s mood
If the cook is culinarily shrewd,
Frying rings, souping French, and even stewed.
Copyright © Dana Prom Smith 2008