Eating and drinking and the rituals that go with them are at least as important as loving in most people’s lives, yet for every hundred anthologies of poems about love, hardly one is devoted to the pleasures of the table. Eat, Drink, and Be Merry abundantly fills the gap.
All kinds of foods and beverages are laid out in these pages, along with picnics and banquets, intimate suppers and quiet dinners, noisy parties and public celebrations–in poems by Horace, Catullus, Hafiz, Rumi, Rilke, Moore, Nabokov, Updike, Mandelstam, Stevens, and many others. From Sylvia Plath’s ecstatic vision of juice-laden berries in “Blackberrying” to D. H. Lawrence’s lush celebration of “Figs,” from the civilized comfort of Noël Coward’s “Something on a Tray” to the salacious provocation of Swift’s “Oysters,” from Li Po on “Drinking Alone” to Baudelaire on “The Soul of the Wine,” and from Emily Dickinson’s “Forbidden Fruit” to Elizabeth Bishop’s “A Miracle for Breakfast,” Eat, Drink, and Be Merry serves up a tantalizing and variegated literary feast.
About Peter Washington
Peter Washington is the editor of many of the Everyman's Library Pocket Poets, including Love Poems, and is the author of Madame Blavatsky's Baboon: A History of the Mystics, Mediums, and Misfits Who Brought Spiritualism to America.