We ate all the way out the desert and back.
In Maine, we had lobster, but we didn’t choose our own
in a high-class suit-and-tie place.
We ate it like hot dogs–
the only way for people of our standing.
We warmed ourselves with clam chowder
in Massachusetts and later cooled off
in Rhode Island with frozen lemonade.
We had more clams–on pizza–
while pondering Mark Twain in Connecticut
and when we arrived in New York,
we skipped pizza altogether
opting for buffalo wings.
But nothing would stop us from having
the real Philly cheese steak
We hit New Jersey just in time for breakfast
and had pork rolls instead of bacon.
We even packed a couple sandwiches to go
We weren’t too hungry by the time we hit Delaware.
Even so, we stopped for vinegar french fries.
We got fancy in Maryland
with sweet blue crab
but in Washington DC decided we preferred street food
We walked the National Mall
with our half-smoke sausage doused in chili.
We bought a bag of ham biscuits in Virginia
And stopped for pulled pork in North Carolina
where we begged for sloppy seconds.
We chatted like children
over pepperoni rolls in West Virginia
and compared recipes for shrimp and grits
in South Carolina.
We had fresh peach pie in Georgia
and continued our dessert spree with Key Lime Pie in Florida.
In Alabama, we had fried green tomatoes
at the Whistle Stop Cafe
(but we skipped the barbecue)
and listened to jazz while we ate shrimp gumbo
under an awning in New Orleans, Louisiana.
We rolled in Mississippi Mud Pie
and followed it with dry-rub ribs in Tennessee.
We had the catch of the day in Arkansas–
fried catfish–the perfect accompaniment
to Oklahoma’s cornmeal okra.
After a lunch of Texas brisket
we ventured to New Mexico
where we argued red vs. green chile over cheeseburgers
(and everything else we ate)
By the time we hit Colorado,
we’d settled on chile verde.
But traded it in fro gravy in Wyoming,
where we feasted on chicken fried steak.
In Idaho, we dipped our steaks in barbecue sauce
and pondered where finger steaks come from
seeing as cows don’t have fingers.
In Utah, we crashed a funeral, just for the potatoes
And had pork chimichangas in Arizona.
After stuffing ourselves at the all-you-can-eat in Nevada
we settled for fish tacos in California.
But still saved room for Marionberry pie in Oregon.
We decided we liked fish and pie more
and fish and custard
so we did it all over again in Washington and Montana
with cedar-planked salmon and huckleberry pie.
We grabbed crepes for breakfast the next day
in North Dakota and made it to her southern sister
in time for a lunch of chislic.
We were elated to find we could carry
Nebraska’s meat pies in our hands
but willingly sat down to a dinner of hotdish in Minnesota.
In Wisconsin, we opted for bratwurst and saurkraut.
In Iowa, we had fresh grilled corn.
Later, we had Kansas City ribs
(Kansas City, Kansas, of course–
we had fried ravioli in Missouri.)
In Illinois, we had pizza served from a deep iron skillet
and feasted on breaded pork sandwiches in Indiana.
Kentucky hot-browns proved
you can’t go wrong with bacon.
We stopped in Ohio to grab some buckeyes for the road
Eating pasties in Michigan
we thought we’d taken a wrong turn and ended up in the UK
And in Vermont, we learned nothing
is as American as apple pie
with cheddar cheese.
When our New Hampshire boiled dinner was over
we argued over how to drive to Hawaii.
(though I do think Alaska and Puerto Rico got short-changed.)