About me

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Green Beans

I did not clean my plate last night. The green beans went out with the trash.

Yes, we are taught that it's a sin to waste. Call me a sinner.

The green bean comes with too much baggage for me to eat with the exception of the fried green bean appitizer served at Porter's in Raleigh.

Why is this, you might ask.

The summer my dad left toward the mid-70s, we had a large garden beside the house with maybe a quarter acre of green beans.

My mother saw this garden as our salvation. We won't go hungry, she said. We have beans, and we'll can them as insurance against hard times.

Every morning that summer, we picked green beans. Every afternoon, we snapped them. Every evening, we canned them.

When Bro and I shirked our duty, she worked alone, back bent in the morning, back hunched in the afternoon, back aching in silence in the evening.

She only asked us but once to help, and she never paused in her mission.

Mama had known hunger as a child, and remember that hunger is far different than being hungry.

By the end of summer, Mama had canned several hundred quarts of green beans.

For easily two decades, my every visit home was ended with the gift of a few quarts of green beans. I took them with a hug and thanks, dumped them out in silence later, and returned the empty jars on the next visit.

I do not think any one garden has ever offered such a bounty of green beans.


She also loved yellow roses with a blush of red, but that summer, the roses went fallow.

This one's for Mama.

-- Posted from a mobile device


Diana said...


The Crow said...

Looks like the Peace rose, my mother's favorite, followed by Mr. Lincoln. She grew both.