I've been angry
I've shed puddles of tears
I've had enough
I want to fly
Like the geese
In a gaggle
To new lands
Far flung and distant
Over corn fields
Under blue skies
after hearing about the geese I saw that made me cry,
my mom sent me this poem.
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting —
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
from Dream Work by Mary Oliver
published by Atlantic Monthly Press
© Mary Oliver
So, as the story goes, this trucker walks into a restaurant and asks the owner to mix French fries and cheese curds together in the same bag. The year was 1957 and the restaurant owner was Fernand Lachance. The location: the dairy town of Warwick, Quebec, Canada.
"Ça va te faire une maudite poutine," ("It's gonna make a hell of a mess"), replies Lachance. But he complies, and the first Poutine is served. “La sauce” (rich, brown gravy) was later added to the dish to keep the food hot.
Several Quebecois communities lay claim to the origin of poutine, including Drummondville, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, and Victoriaville, but the most popular story is the Lachance story.
Poutine has been described as a cholesterol highball, a fatty delight and a fast food icon.
But Charles-Alexandre Théorêt, author of Maudite Poutine!, describes the dish to Montreal's The Gazette as being more psychological in nature:
A generous portion of shamefried gently in an inferiority complexand topped with a hint of denigrationfrom the ROC (Rest of Canada) –and a touch of guilty pleasure.
"Love it or hate it, poutine has become a strong symbol of Quebec," says Théorêt.
In his book, Théorêt insists that the real poutine is properly made with cheese curds softened - not melted - by the warm gravy and fresh enough to squeak when bitten, due to their high humidity.
Poutine even made it on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s (CBC) list of the 10 greatest Canadian inventions, beating out basketball, the Canadarm, and the music synthesizer, and finding its place between the electric wheelchair and the cobalt 60 “bomb” cancer treatment. It even placed ahead of the snowblower in the list of Canadian inventions.
After 53 years, Poutine is finally gaining respect beyond the borders of Quebec. .The New York Times referred to Poutine as “a staple from Quebec, embarrassing but adored.”
Have you ever made Poutine? I have yet to do that!
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