So many of the things around us, both the edible and the non-edible, are “food” for us—for the tummy, for the mind, and for the soul. We ingest and digest what we taste, see, and hear, and we are either nourished or intoxicated by various life experiences. In other words, the world is brimming with all sorts of nourishment: From the aesthetic side of things, beauty nurtures the soul; from the social side, food is a means of bonding and communicating; in every culture, special foods have specific functions in traditions and rituals; in myths, foods play a symbolic role and can build or destruct a nation. Food is medicine, food is love, food is beaty and art in all its forms. It is a need, a want, and a pleasure. Most importantly, it is a source of inspiration, and plays a huge role in our lives—a role bigger than to manifest itself consciously to us all the time (unless we’re constantly hungry!).
The menu of this special issue of Indelible promises an artistic feast—a delectable assortment of literary and visual meals, with plenty of poems and stories that are food for thought and so many culinary artworks that will linger in our memories. Issue no. 5 will show food as images of home, snapshots of holidays, sketches of traditions (like fig drying, olive-picking, molasses making, kibbe pounding) or futuristic visions (pasta and UFO’s). You will also feast your eyes on ekphrastic works responding to Rembrandt and Chagall; paintings are also featured depicting food in moments of history that herald new beginnings in faraway lands. And then there are the wordsmith (or rather, wordchef) poets and writers that will take you on a journey among the artichokes and ice-cream, Coffee and caviar, Fruits and fries, where you will find tales of love, friendship and family, as well as tales of mystery revolving around bananas and bean croissants. Of course, there are also pieces about the less salubrious aspects of food: its abuse, its scarcity, and its wastage—from hunger to food crisis and food disorders. However, with food being thy medicine, various Indelible poets share their input on how poetry had been “food for the soul” in helping them deal with the pandemic.
This is a scintillating new issue—to be enjoyed with your favorite drink, a dash of inspiration, and a pinch of marvel. Have a good feast!
Dr. Roula-Maria Dib