Wishbone Soup

It's a real soup. It's also a state of mind, which, if by cure we mean 'make better,' does cure everything. 

To explain, here's a brief autobiographical tale.

Once upon a time there was a wonky cottage with two tiny open fires and an impressive collection of cold damp draughts. There was no telephone, no internet, TV reception depended on the weather, and whether they could afford the electric bill. Living in the cottage was a growing family with a shrinking budget. When the gas bottle ran out they cooked on the fire. It was impossibly picturesque, so don't feel sorry for them, and most weeks they could buy a chicken from the supermarket. It was one of those value chickens; kept in crowded filth for a short miserable life and its bedraggled body injected with water to give an impression of plump health under glossy cellophane. Not the happiest purchase available, just the cheapest. In death, the sad straggly bird was greatly appreciated. Roasted with lots of cheap potatoes on Sunday, Chicken Pie on Monday; cheap flour, thick pastry; by Tuesday there were only bones left. The feasting was over. The bones were simmered into stock, and called Chicken Soup at first, which caused some disappointment, because there was only stock and the cheap potatoes. So, the wishbone went back in the pot, and the soup was renamed. Now, it had a prize in it, an actual wish. Now, it made them laugh. 

Eventually, the laughing became more important than the wish.


Geo. said…
Time-traveled back here out of curiosity and was rewarded by the title-story of your excellent blog. Hope may indeed spring eternal in the human breast --as per Alexander Pope-- but it is poultry and poetry that sustains it from day to day. So I greet you here at the outset and leave an appreciative comment. Thank you!

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