The Taste of Humility

Oh Cilantro, most benign of herbs,

why do so many despise you?


Even Rosemary, with her piney sharpness,

doesn’t endure such scorn.


And Thyme, with all his pungency,

fields little grief.


Meanwhile Sage, exuding bitterness,

rarely invokes a complaint.


And of course,

everyone loves that Sweet Basil.


While your cousin Parsley, with all its curls,

is invited to every party!


But you, Cilantro,

who chefs casually toss onto tacos and stir-fries,

ignite the scorn of even Julia Child,

who claimed she would pluck you from a dish

and cast you to the floor.


Cilantrophobes say you taste like soap,

but if they could only give you a chance,

let their minds rewire to accept you,

they might savor your humility.


A bit sweet and quite earthy,

you bring flavors together

with no need to stand out,

or scream across a plate.


Like the one who holds open the door

for all to pass in before her,

you offer subtle strength,

while adding a touch of green

and a little zing.



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9 Responses to “The Taste of Humility”

  1. Garry Angus December 14, 2017 at 8:45 am #

    very beautiful and powerful, Lesley.

    I enjoy the depth and maturity of this work more than all else i have read from you.
    I look forward to what’ s next for yoy

  2. Stephani December 14, 2017 at 9:30 am #

    Thanks for adding some zing to my days with your skillful words and creativity! Among other things, this thoughtful musing is, for me, an analogy for self-acceptance and humility. Always good reminders this direction!

  3. Monica Zmuda December 14, 2017 at 9:41 am #

    This is so visually creative. Love it. 💖

  4. Hvisarraga December 14, 2017 at 9:53 am #

    Well I for one really loves cilantro and this beautiful reminder about humility. In salsa, scrambled eggs, lentil salads, etc., cilantro has been my friend. So love your lively imagery of the different herbs. You are the best.

  5. Bud Russo December 14, 2017 at 10:23 am #

    Interesting insight … and a fun read. A friend tells me I have the anti-cilantro gene. No matter how I try, it tastes like soap.

  6. Rudy December 14, 2017 at 1:53 pm #

    It’s so interesting you would write a spiritual poem about cilantro, of all herbs. In the circles I am surrounded by, cilantro is never questioned. It is regarded as important to a dish as a tortilla is to a taco. However, like so much of this world, my taste for cilantro has undergone a transformation. I guess I was one of those who gave cilantro a chance. It used to be repulsive to me, but after learning more about it, and trying it in different dishes, I now find it delicious, but it must always be fresh, never dried. And best of all, it adds such delightful color to my smile when it gets caught in my teeth.

    Fun, pensive poem, Lesley. Bien hecho!

    • Lesley December 16, 2017 at 7:00 pm #

      Thank you all for you comments. It has been a joy to read your responses to this. Rudy, thank you for the chuckle, and Garry, I’m glad to hear you’re enjoying this work the Beloved has me undertaking. I sure do! Blessings to you all.

  7. Cathy Smith December 19, 2017 at 7:49 am #

    Thanks for standing up for the mighty cilantro!! It brings me joy just sniffing its fresh, fresh scent in the grocery store! Lovely poem!

  8. al medina January 2, 2018 at 5:53 am #

    Much love, Lesley. Your humility allows for refulgence and, I am sure, a savory life. Blessings.

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