In fact, Twain was so exact about wild foods because, during years of rambling travels, he’d tasted them all at their best—which meant eating them where they were from. He’d eaten prairie-chickens as a boy in Hannibal, Missouri, just across the river from the great tallgrass, and terrapin as a printer’s assistant in Philadelphia. He’d eaten sheepshead and croaker fish as a steamboat pilot in New Orleans, and Lahontan cutthroat trout in Tahoe when he fled west, away from the draft agents of the Union and Confederate armies. In a very real sense, his menu was a memoir of fondly remembered travels, from the prairies to the mountains and from the New Orleans docks to the backstreets of San Francisco.
Posts Tagged ‘Lit’
Most of us have things we want to get done and people we want to communicate with, so we narrow our range of concerns, and agree to name and describe things within the acceptable range. Can’t quite put a word to that sense of nostalgia for a place you’ve never been? Not sure how to describe what’s wrong the world when your eyes are a bit unfocused after too much reading? A bit overwhelmed with the surge of emotion brought on by a song you don’t even like? Call in the poets: they’re especially skilled at naming the just barely nameable.