Another History of the Bean

By on Jan 14, 2013 in Poetry

Thoreau's cabin with a heart made of coffee beans

Thoreau hoed his 24,750 bean plants
from 5 A.M. till noon each day.
I cannot say the furry little things
are worth the effort, though they
have their own charms when
Chinese-restaurant green
or flavored with bread crumbs
and garlicky butter.
My mother always warned me
against my passion for the slick beans
at the top of a newly-opened can,
but I’m still here and Thoreau is not.
He only lasted 26 months at Walden,
and I’m still levering open tins,
still savoring those first slick fruits.
There are no rules
when it comes to love.


Carol Hamilton has recent publications In Louisiana Review, Tribeca Poetry Review, Boston Literary Review, Iodine Poetry Review, Bluestem, I-70 Review, U.S.1 Worksheet, Colere, Lilliput, Flint Hills Review, Hubbub, Blue Unicorn, Sow's Ear Poetry, District Lit, Haight Ashbury Poetry Journal, Texas Poetry Calendar and others. She has published 17 books: children's novels, legends and poetry, the latest being Such Deaths. She is a former poet laureate of Oklahoma and has been nominated five times for a Pushcart Prize.