I am rolling in the green stuff. This week was all about organic asparagus which is so perfect when it is grilled, flavored with lemon, rolled inside of prosciutto, and garnished with a bit of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.
In the salad bowl I keep recreating the Verde, a salad they serve at Pizza Nea in Northeast Minneapolis. I love their pizza, but it is this refreshing salad that pulls me in on warm spring afternoons and hot summer nights. I’ve imitated the Verde on many occasions in many forms although nothing beats having it fresh from the restaurant.
When spring arrives I find myself humming a song we sang in high school choir, “The Earth Adorned.” Translated from Swedish (Sommerpsalm) to English the lyrics are simple but lovely poetry, something I recognized even as an ornery teenager who preferred the mall over nature. I know it is hokey but I always had to fight tears when we sang it. I’d blame my emotions on adolescent angst but today the message continues to move me:
The earth adorned in verdant robe
sends praises upward surging,
while soft winds breathe on fragrant flowers
from winter now emerging.
The sunshine bright gives warmth and light
to budding blossoms tender,
proclaiming summer splendor.
From out the wood, the birds now sing
and each its song now raises,
to join with all the universe
in voicing thankful praises.
With hope and joy their songs employ
a rapturous exultation
in praise of God’s creation.
O God, amid these joys of life,
creation’s glory beaming,
grant us the grace to keep your word
and live in love redeeming.
All flesh is grass, the flowers fade,
and time is fleeting ever;
God’s word remains forever.
Waldeman Ahlen (trans. Carolyn and Kenneth Jennings)
Some of us find spirituality in the seasons and in music. Others may seek it in nature or at the mall. I’ve found it many places, and can even claim to have had a spiritual moment or two (or more) while reflecting upon the plate in front of me. For more musings on green (both on the earth and in salad), head to Called to the Table this week. As the weekend begins I’ll keeping greening it up and humming Sommarpsalm.