Lines Written In The Fannie Farmer Cookbook
[Given to Frank Bidart]
by Elizabeth Bishop
You won't become a gourmet* cook
By studying our Fannie's book--
Her thoughts on Food & Keeping House
Are scarcely those of Lévi-Strauss.
Nevertheless, you'll find, Frank dear,
The basic elements** are here.
And if a problem should arise:
The Soufflé fall before your eyes,
Or strange things happen to the Rice
--You know I love to give advice.
* Forbidden word
** Forbidden phrase
P.S. Fannie should not be underrated;
She has become sophisticated.
She's picked up many gourmet* tricks
Since the edition of '96.