An Act of Preservation

When my grandmother died, one of the hardest acts was to empty her pantry.

Food is uncomfortably revealing-

A marker of personality, events, and secret pleasures.

Neatly labeled packages and cans alike all formed a clear and present

Vision of her standing in her pantry, bent over her future meals.

Those acts we use to preserve the food we grow

Canning, smoking, pickling, drying

Bake the memories into the process.

Those jams are from the summer when the sun baked the ground and the sky

Those apples from the cooler August where summer and fall were impossible to separate.

Taste is a powerful connection

A bridge between time and people

The flavour of home-made jam

Both a summer warm with potential

And a now empty pantry

Stripped of taste.

The contents change, but the memories remain

Taste is such an integral connection to people and places.

For more stories dwelling on the importance of taste, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here. Its sequel, With Honor Intact, can be found here.

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