Thursday, February 25, 2010

Mushroom - February 25 2010

Rain, and then

the cool pursed

lips of the wind

draw them

out of the ground...


balancing in the earth

on one hoof

packed with poison..

...looking innocent as sugar

but full of paralysis:

to eat

is to stagger down

fast as mushrooms themselves

when they are done being perfect

and overnight

slide back under the shining

fields of rain.

Out in the woods are plants that save and seduce, beckoning us to join them in the composting of leaves and lives. Mushrooms for example. Last week I went for a walk where mushrooms peppered the trails. They were such perfect things - and I wondered how it was I knew so little about them. I have no ideas which one would kill, and which would thrill with their hallucinogenic properties. Others would likely fill my gullet with savory delight. Mushrooms are one of my favorite foods, but I know them not. Maybe I stay away from them in the wild state because I do not trust myself to discern what is friend and what is foe. I grew up with my mother saying "don't pick and eat mushrooms except what you can get in the store." I wonder what other messages she and my cultures gave me that keep me away subconsciously from what might nourish me. In part, this too explains my reactions to some people, or even our species as a whole. If we could but discern who is with us, and who is not, we could awake in the day knowing whether to save or savor the day. Maybe I'm just dreaming. Perhaps, like mushrooms, we know there is beauty hidden in the wet rug that blankets wildness, and choose to admire from afar.

Do you eat any wild foods? What nourishes you that is wild and untamed?

1 comment:

  1. I, too, wish I knew more about mushrooms. I have eaten wild black berries, raspberries, huckleberries and grapes. Of course, I have eaten wild fish which I have caught. The one poisonous fish I know not to eat is a puffer fish which we often caught in the Intercoastal. I have also eaten venison.

    I grew up with parents with prejudices toward groups of people which I believe I have overcome and not passed on to my children. For two years our apartment was in a school district of many hispanic migrants and blacks. My children were the two percent minority. They didn't experience prejudice against them, but rather a curiosity from classmates who were all friendly and great teachers.