Basket of plenty, cornucopia of blessings, giver Of life. Emblem of prosperity and abundance. Though you proceed from the humbling, Dusty walls of shameful metropolitan Factories, of mindless managers Who overwork the poor, who view Selfless entities such as yourself As mere products, as profit, your nascency Is anything but disgraceful. When you were Birthed, machines and metal whirred In proud applause. Your fellows clinked Their glass lids together, celebrating Your creation. From the very moment you were Boxed, imbued in you were gifts Of power. Of purpose. Of the promise Of home. How lucky, blessed, indeed Graced by the divine, I am, for you To have found your home in the chaos Of my kitchen. O bearer Of edible pearls of the orient. O sacred Uterus of stainless steel and plastic. O Teflon-lined Magical chamber in which lowly, indigestible Grain transforms into glorious, heaven- Sent clouds of nourishment. You are The salvation of bran, the messiah Of oryza sativa, the redeemer who chooses Not whom she saves. In you, all crop From red and brown to jasmine and calrose find A mother. A nurturer, a caregiver, with no Complaints, no demands, no impositions. With only the numbing, violet fuel Of electricity you give sustenance When asked. With only a small space On the kitchen counter you provide the most Reliable of companionships. Most dependable. Most unchanging. You stand by me when others Do not, you on your small, delicate Feet of tireless rubber, on your holy mat Of microfiber towels. When the world Is against me, when I am derailed by the bone- Crushing abasement of bosses and aunts-in-law, You are there for me. You listen to my laments With patience, with compassion, and when I seek From you a response I receive not Anger, nor unsolicited advice, but Refreshing wellsprings of soft, Strengthening meal. Through My pregnancy, through my doctorate Theses, you cared for me in the mornings, Noons, and nights, in moments of burning Gastronomical desire, in moments of crippling Nausea, in homesickness. I am grateful for each Day that I pour grain and water into you To be transfigured, that I am graced By your alabaster armor adorned with cerulean Lilies — a reminder of the peace, the handfuls Of heaven you bring to me.
Ikera Olandesca is a student and leader of a Literature Club, school literary journal, and digital school art museum.