Stew — A Dream

An artfully altered photo of a yellow-enameled cast-iron Dutch oven, filled with shredded paper, on a stove top.
“Stew” — C.Birde, 8/21


2 c. vegetable broth

1 c. brown lentils

2 T. extra-virgin olive oil

1 onion, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 t. ground cumin

½ t. ground coriander

½ t. ground turmeric

salt & fresh-ground black pepper, to taste

1 manuscript, shredded


On full, dark night in open-format kitchen with streamlined, brushed-steel appliances – open all of porch’s double French doors in invitation to West Wind to pour over slate floor.

Place oval Dutch oven with tight-fitting lid over medium heat; add olive oil; heat until shimmering, ≈ 3 minutes. Add onion & garlic; sauté until onion softens & becomes translucent, stirring occasionally, ≈ 3-5 minutes. Add lentils & spices; stir well to combine; allow lentils to toast slightly, ≈ 2 minutes. Add vegetable broth; stir until well incorporated.

Carefully add shredded manuscript. Observe any stray words: Autumnal; wind-slippered; irrelevance. Consider meaning. Incorporate all slim strips with other ingredients; bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover & allow to stew indefinitely.

While waiting, notice Moon’s reflection in countless glass panes; listen to silence; water plants.

— C.Birde, 8/21

3 thoughts on “Stew — A Dream

  1. Wait. You actually had this in a dream and then proceeded to write it out like a cooking lesson? My dear, once more, you exhibit brilliance beyond the average mortal. Namaste.

    If I had to offer interpretation, I’d say this was a prompt to write something very “juicy” rather than waste time with nature’s elements, making use of some divine inspiration (as you’ve started to do here). Or, if you have already been writing something creative, the dream is either your self-doubt telling you to scrap it and enjoy the last of summer before the harvest moon (the Asian moon festival approaches)…or some prompt to let your creativity simmer until it reveals its true potential. [The more I think about this, the more possible explanations I find.]

    Or, could someone in your life be trying to tell you to eat your own words? 😛 Meaning…you might have been involved in some of the black kettle and pot calling.

    Liked by 1 person

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