‘Chinese Food’: A Poem by Frank Wagner

Chinese New Year was celebrated this past Saturday. And, when we think about it, what’s more American now than Chinese food? It’s everywhere, and most of us have enjoyed it. Frank Wagner brings us back to the table in this poem with his praise of a warming meal. Let us know in a Comment if you have a favorite Chinese dish or if you have a memorable experience with take-out, a late supper at your go-to restaurant, or a big banquet with Chinese food.

Web photo courtesy of recipetineats


Chinese Food

If you ever question if life is worth living,
you must consider the joy of
hot Chinese food on a cold day,
with the steam of the soup,
the spices of the chicken,
oh yes, the soup, the hot and sour soup,
steaming from the little bowl,
and all the rice.
Just outside, the wind from the north blows
so cold that it bites the skin on your face,
but when the hot tea
stings the tongue
with that first sip,
you know that
all the world is warm,
it is time to sleep again
along with the most gentle dreams.


Frank Wagner (c) 2020

3 Responses to ‘Chinese Food’: A Poem by Frank Wagner

  1. Nancye Tuttle says:

    Green Bamboo was our go-to place for Chinese food when I worked in the newsroom at the Lowell Sun in Kearney Square. General Tsao’s chicken, beef with broccoli, egg rolls, fried rice. We loved all the specials and ordered them often for lunch on a Friday afternoon. “10 minutes,” the young Chinese girl would say when we called in our order. Then one of us in Lifestyle collected the cash, bundled up against the cold winter win and traipsed across the street to our favorite Oriental eatery. Back in a flash, we tore in to the styrofoam containers overflowing with steamy, savory deliciousness. We couldn’t get the delectable rice into our mouths fast enough. And the crackling sound as we bit into the egg rolls was sheer delight. Green Bamboo was there spring, summer, fall and winter. But it was on winter Fridays that we craved it most of all — warm, satisfying, filling and loaded with flavorful carbs to tied us through the afternoon until we could leave the newsroom at five and head home to snooze on the couch as the snow fell and the winds howled on a somber winter night.

  2. PaulM says:

    Nancye, I hope your richly remembered experience at Green Bamboo in Lowell sparks many more comments by readers. This is a topic that everyone can talk about. And Happy New Year a few days late to our friends who are celebrating this week.

  3. Marie Louise St.Onge says:

    When I was a child, we would thrill to the occasional “take-out” of Chow Mein ordered from Cathay Garden out there on Rte.113. Always on a Sunday night, it was a fabulous treat. My father would carefully remove the single staple from the top of the brown bag and “Voila” ….noodles, soy sauce, and your future revealed on a hidden strip of paper.
    We loved it!