Black Cowboy Stew by Q.R. Williams






This poem is part of a special section of the Mid-Atlantic Review, Celebrating Black History, and selected by editors Khadijah Ali-Coleman, Carolivia Herron, and Rebecca Bishophall. To learn more about this series read a blog post on the Day Eight website here.

Black Cowboy Stew
by Q.R. Williams

One bowl is enough, but two bowls are better,
A mixture of Heaven in one pot.
Angus ground beef from our own purebred livestock.
Sun-kissed tomatoes, dripping juicy for added in flavor,
Precisely diced from the cutting board of Noirs de France.
Rough hands on the ranch are the same hands motioned to be gentle over a hot kettle.
Corn shaved straight from the cob,
Every kernel bursting with crunch.
Mixture of beans and peas packed with protein,
Fresh cut onions without shedding a tear,
Sliced fat from the hog,
Peeled potatoes cubed and tossed in,
Smoked sausage deprived from what remained after the pluck from the chicken coop,
Peppers crushed to wake the spice,
And the aroma covers the camp as smoke cascade upward towards the night sky.
Ingredients just as calming as the fresh air.
Herbs and a blend of seasoning that resembles flair from the Ivory Coast,
This is home so far away from home.
Andouille! Let’s come together and eat.
Smacking goodness stirred with a wooden spoon,
Sat on the pharaoh’s meal prep table to being hung in the master’s kitchen,
Traveling and whipped around right along with us.
Stew harmonized with hot-water cornbread, topped with butter, and drizzled with honey;
Music to my ears.
Recipes that cover celebration, contentment, survival and sorrow.
Mouthwatering from the un-sinful pleasures and locked in steam,
Truly food for the mahogany soul.

Q.R. Williams is a certified notary public, creative writer and co-author of the books– ‘After We Parted: Rebuilding Our Lives After Divorce’, ‘It’s a Matron of Honor: Journey to Womanhood’, ‘Because I Am More than Just My Skin’, ‘The Power of… What is Love??’, ‘The Other Side of Through’ and ‘My First Love’. She is also a featured contributor in ‘Black Family Magazine’ & ‘Spoken Black Girl Magazine’. During her career, she has mainly served within Healthcare and Customer Service. Q.R. previously held the professional titles of: Care Navigator Supervisor, Senior Administrative Assistant and Client Service Professional. She is certified as an Etiquette Decorum Instructor, Community Health Worker, Mental Health First Aid Advocate, and Reflective Conversation Facilitator. She is also certified in Restorative Justice 101. Q.R. was a featured digital photography artist within the ‘When Homeward You Turn’ Exhibition at Dittmar Gallery (Northwestern University). Recently, she completed the Women’s Entrepreneurship Program at Cornell University. Q.R. is married to husband, Joshua & the mother of John and Jalani.

Featured image in this post is: “Black Cowboys”, Texas State Historical Association, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Bourgeon’s mission, through our online publication and community initiatives, is twofold: to increase participation in the arts and to improve access to the arts. Bourgeon is a project of the not-for-profit Day Eight.
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