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Gastronomical Perfection [by M. F. K. Fisher]

   Any Questions  David Lehman 19 Oct 2023
I feel now that gastronomical perfection can be reached in these combinations: one person dining alone, usually upon a couch or a hill side; two people, of no matter what sex or age, dining in a good restaurant; six people, of no matter what sex or age, dining in a good home.
   Three or four people sometimes attain perfection either in public or in private, but they must be very congenial, else the conversation, both spoken and unsaid, which is so essential a counterpoint to the meal's harmony, will turn dull and forced. Usually six people act as whets, or goads, in this byplay and make the whole more casual, if, perhaps, less significant.
   The six should be capable of decent social behavior: that is, no two of them should be so much in love as to bore the others, nor at the opposite extreme should they be carrying on any sexual or professional feud which could put poison on the plates all must eat from. A good combination would be one married couple, for warm composure; one less firmly established, to add a note of investigation to the talk; and two strangers of either sex, upon whom the better acquainted diners could sharpen their questioning wits.
-- M.F.K Fisher
   An Alphabet of Gourmets

Quiz:  Name the poem written by W. H. Auden in response to this passage. -- sdh                                                                              

September 01, 2023

May 26, 2023

March 10, 2023

February 21, 2023

January 04, 2023

November 02, 2022

October 22, 2022

September 01, 2022

August 04, 2022

May 19, 2022

February 04, 2022

November 19, 2021

October 14, 2021

September 01, 2021

January 12, 2021

September 01, 2019

April 28, 2019

April 18, 2019

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That Ship Has Sailed
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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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