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Sweet Food Poetry Collection from Poetic Pastries

Animal Crackers
By: Christopher Morley

Animal crackers and cocoa to drink,
That is the finest of suppers, I think;
When I’m grown up and can have what I please
I think I shall always insist upon these.

What do you choose when you’re offered a treat?
When Mother says, “What would you like best to eat?”
Is it waffles and syrup, or cinnamon toast?
It’s cocoa and animals that I love the most!

The kitchen’s the coziest place that I know:
The kettle is singing, the stove is aglow,
And there in the twilight, how jolly to see
The cocoa and animals waiting for me.

Daddy and Mother dine later in state,
With Mary to cook for them, Susan to wait;
But they don’t have nearly as much fun as I
Who eat in the kitchen with Nurse standing by;
And Daddy once said he would like to be me
Having cocoa and animals once more for tea!

(Founder of Saturday Review, 1924-1941)

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The Ballad Of Bouillabaisse

A Street there is in Paris famous,
For which no rhyme our language yields,
Rue Neuve de petits Champs its name is-
The New Street of the Little Fields;
And there’s an inn, not rich and splendid,
But still in comfortable case–
The which in youth I oft attended,
To eat a bowl of Bouillabaisse.

This Bouillabaisse a noble dish is–
A sort of soup, or broth, or brew,
Or hotchpotch of all sorts of fishes,
That Greenwich never could outdo;
Green herbs, red peppers, muscles, saffern,
Soles, onions, garlic, roach, and dace;
All these you eat at Terre’s tavern,
In that one dish of Bouillabaisse.

Indeed, a rich and savory stew ‘t is;
And true philosophers, methinks,
Who love all sorts of natural beauties,
Should love good victuals and good drinks.
And Cordelier or Benedictine
Might gladly, sure, his lot embrace,
Nor find a fast-day too afflicting,
Which served him up a Bouillabaisse.

I wonder if the house still there is?
Yes, here the lamp is as before;
The smiling, red-cheeked ecaillere is
Still opening oysters at the door.
Is Terre still alive and able?
I recollect his droll grimace;
He’d come and smile before your table,
And hoped you like your Bouillabaisse.

We enter; nothing’s changed or older.
“How’s Monsieur Terre, waiter, pray?”
The waiter stares and shrugs his shoulders ;–
“Monsieur is dead this many a day.”
“It is the lot of saint and sinner.
So honest Terre’s run his race!”
“What will Monsieur require for dinner?”
“Say, do you still cook Bouillabaisse?”

“Oh, oui, Monsieur,” ‘s the waiter’s answer;
“Quel vin Monsieur desire-t-il ?”
“Tell me a good one.” “That I can, sir;
The Chambertin with yellow seal.”
“So Terre’s gone,” I say, and sink in
My old accustomed corner-place;
“He’s done with feasting and wine drinking,
With Burgundy and Bouillabaisse.”

My old accustomed corner here is–
The table still is in the nook;
Ah! vanished many a busy year is,
This well-known chair since last I took.
When first I saw ye, Cari luoghi,
I’d scarce a beard upon my face,
And now a grizzled, grim old fogy,
I sit and wait for Bouillabaisse.

Where are you, old companions trusty
Of early days, here met to dine?
Come, waiter! quick, a flagon crusty
I’ll pledge them in the good old wine.
The kind old voices and old faces
My memory can quick retrace;
Around the board they take their places,
And share the wine and Bouillabaisse.

There’s Jack has made a wondrous marriage;
There’s laughing Tom is laughing yet;
There’s brave Augustus drives his carriage;
There’s poor old Fred in the Gazette;
On James’ head the grass is growing:
Good Lord! the world has wagged apace
Since here we sat the Claret flowing,
And drank, and ate the Bouillabaisse.

Ah me! how quick the days are flitting!
I mind me of a time that’s gone,
When here I’d sit, as now I’m sitting,
In this same place–but not alone.
A fair young form was nestled near me,
A dear, dear face looked fondly up,
And sweetly spoke and smiled to cheer me.
–There’s no one now to share my cup.

I drink it as the Fates ordain it.
Come, fill it, and have done with rhymes;
Fill up the lonely glass, and drain it
In memory of dear old times.
Welcome the wine, whate’er the seal is;
And sit you down and say your grace
With thankful heart, whate’er the meal is.
here comes the smoking Bouillabaisse !

William Makepeace Thackery18 July 1811 – 24 December 1863)

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The Apple Dumplings and a King

“Very astonishing indeed! strange thing!”

(Turning the Dumpling round, rejoined the King),

“‘Tis most extraordinary, then, all this is;

It beats Penetti’s conjuring all to pieces;

Strange I should never of a Dumpling dream!

But, Goody, tell me where, where, where’s the Seam?”

“Sire, there’s no Seam,” quoth she; “I never knew

That folks did Apple-Dumplings sew.”

“No!” cried the staring Monarch with a grin;

“How, how the devil got the Apple in?”

Dr. John Wolcot(9 May 1738 – 14 January 1819)

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I Gave My Love A Cherry

I gave my love a cherry
That has no stone,

I gave my love a chicken
That has no bone,

I gave my love a baby
That’s no cryin’.

How can there be a cherry
That has no stone?

How can there be a chicken
That has no bone?

How can there be a baby
That’s no cryin’?

A cherry when it’s buddin’,
It has no stone.

A chicken in the eggshell
It has no bone.

A baby when it’s sleepin’
Is no cryin’.

Old Appalachian song…undated

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Serenely full,
the epicure would say,

Fate cannot harm me,
I have dined today.

Sydney Smith
quoted in ‘Lady Holland’s Memoir’

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When the Sultan Goes to Ispahan

When the Sultan Shah-Zaman

Goes to the city Ispahan,

Even before he gets so far

As the place where the clustered palm-trees are,

At the last of the thirty palace-gates

The pet of the harem, Rose-in-Bloom,

Orders a feast in his favorite room–

Glittering square of colored ice,

Sweetened with syrup, tinctured with spice,

Creams, and cordials, and sugared dates,

Syrian apples, Othmanee quinces,

Limes and citrons and apricots,

And wines that are known to Eastern princes.

Thomas Bailey Aldrich (November 11, 1836 – March 19, 1907)

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Champagne

Give me Champagne and fill it to the brim,

I’ll toast in bumpers ev’ry lovely limb;

I’ll challenge all the heroes of the skies

To show a goddess with a Craven’s eyes.

Why then averse to love? Ah, leave disdain,

Discard thy fickle undeserving swain,

And pledge thy lover in the brisk Champagne.

Lord Chesterfield ‘Witticisms’ (1773)

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Elizabeth Bennet:

And that put paid to it. I wonder who first discovered the power of poetry in driving away love?

Mr. Darcy:

I thought that poetry was the food of love.

Elizabeth Bennet:

Of a fine stout love, it may. But if it is only a vague inclination I’m convinced one poor sonnet will kill it stone dead!

Mr. Darcy:

So what do you recommend to encourage affection?

Elizabeth Bennet:

Dancing. Even if one’s partner is barely tolerable.

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