This is a solitary meal. It lacks any enticing side dishes, I have no appetite, and it’s a necessity rather than a culinary delight. Perhaps I snapped back to reality after hastily consuming the rice. Even in these circumstances, the compulsion to eat persists. The frail body elicits a mix of disdain and pity, yet the mind, devoid of a destination, shifts its focus to the remnants of rice. The neglected rice in a grimy bowl strangely mirrors my insignificance.
Even without a direct encounter with ‘rice,’ this poem evokes a peculiar recognition. Within its verses, the aroma of chilled rice mingles with the essence of dinner, loneliness, and sadness. It’s uncommon for a poetic tableau to exude fragrance like a cigar, yet this composition carries a profound scent derived from the five viscera and the six entrails of life. It doesn’t merely appeal to our olfactory sense but rather resonates with the soul’s sensory perception. It’s as if the poet is prompting us to recognize this scent within our own experiences.
The rice clings persistently to the spoon, transforming into a stubborn residue adhering to the bowl, eventually finding its way to the edges of the dinner. Ultimately, a solitary grain of rice expands to the proportions of a person, overwhelming the one wielding the spoon. It is said that not even a strong man can get rid of dried rice from a bowl. Similar to the relentless grip of rice, the weed known as sadness can engulf individuals. As winter approaches, let it be a season where we can observe the subtle sorrows of others and extend our concern towards them.