Macarrão: A Perfeita Combinação do Passado e do Futuro

Macarrão: A Perfeita Combinação do Passado e do Futuro
Pasta: The Perfect Combination of the Past and the Future

In the glum kitchen table on a weeknight
I seldom thought about your reason

I assumed–carelessly, naively, mistakenly
from the beginning, I had you at will
every other evening, “ugh, not again,”
I would murmur to myself,
as my mom brought over a hearty plate
of course, macarrão
“Ninguem merece,” I would passive aggressively comment

Now, I wholeheartedly regret the resentment
Now, I understand your worth
The same God that made you, made me
Yet, I was too blind to see it–to see your worth

I think about your roots, your origin
How you came to be
How you will always come
Beautiful, astonishing, perplexing

I was fortunate to have you so early
I must apologize for my ignorance
I never want to leave you, because
Now, I understand your purpose

The farmers who cultivated you
Who made it all possible
Who made me know you, and now,
Absolutely, love you

Obrigado, macarrão

So much diligence
And, ultimately,
In this very moment,
Between me and
My biteful of macarrão

  1. I chose this piece because it resonated with me greatly. In Saporoso, Jennifer Barone characterizes her relationship with zucchini so splendidly, while also coming to realize the importance of the roots of zucchini and how her connection with the ingredient was made possible. She concludes by citing a few attributes that describe her relationship with zucchini in a powerful, intriguing manner.
  2. Thus, throughout this class, I’ve had a couple of “lightbulb moments:” One of them happened to be the fact that I never consciously realized how much pasta has been part of my life journey. Throughout my upbringing, I would consistently have pasta be part of my everyday meal, but I never understood its values, its roots and ultimately, its effects on my happiness. As my love for pasta grew bigger and bigger throughout undergrad, I was prompted to take this course. It was just recently, as I was studying for my oral midterm that it all came together inside my head. Pasta connects me to some of my most fascinating moments of growing up in a Brazilian household. Now, when consuming pasta, I instantly feel the palpable connection with my past, and most importantly, I stop to think about how pasta came to be, how its creation manifested in my life, and how it will always have a piece of my heart moving forward.
  3. The culture of the original author is inquisitive, its intentional, and its quite mesmerizing. The deep layers of her words go beyond the physical and allows one to create their own picture of the story. The reflective attitude of the author also conveys a “lightbulb moment,” similar to mine, and it translates a certain, unique connection with the food item. Moreover, her ending portion illustrating her relationship with the food item conveys just how much power there is between humans and their food, especially when they stop to think about why that is.
  4. Through my own writing, I learned that I have tendency to describe certain things I find most salient in the most thoughtful way possible. Instead of just using one or two adjectives, I search for a combination of words that work in parallel to convey a critical point to the audience. For instance, together, I use the words “beautiful, astonishing, [and] perplexing.” The combination of these three words emphatically bring about light and spark a genuine interest–that is exactly how I feel when voicing my thoughts about pasta. Lastly, I learned how to use my linguistic abilities to better highlight my connection with the ingredient and with my own culture. When speaking about my family and my roots, I cannot help but utilize the words in the language they were spoken in.  In parallel with the author, I too, love to write poems with a reflective attitude embedded across each line. In my opinion, reflection is one of the most sincere ways to throw your thoughts into a captivating piece.
  5. Yes! The cultural DNA that is threaded across my piece is my Brazilian roots–through language, I (hopefully) convey the potent, powerful effects of pasta in my childhood. Additionally, I hypothesize that there is an element of culture tied into this poem. Her thought-provoking analysis leads me to conclude that there were many “why?” moments from her past that inspired her creation. Perhaps, it was a cultural tradition with zucchini in her life, or instead, it could be a family recipe that calls for zucchini. Uncovering what is under the hood would help readers recognize that culture is a broad concept that incorporates many everyday practices under one umbrella term. Hence, I decided to channel my “why?” moments and put them on paper, which correlated with my cultural identity, as a Brazilian, who never understood the meaning of pasta in my early days up until now. Lastly, I made it one of my goals to be as authentic as possible in conveying my message of enlightenment by utilizing concrete diction to characterize pasta, while also putting my Portuguese language to good use.

Thank you for reading and sharing a piece of my realization alongside me.


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