On Wednesday, May 3, during the Verna Miller Case Symposium, Professor Sandra Beasley (Spring 2023 McGee Visiting Professor of Creative Writing) set up a table in front of E.H. Little Library and invited Davidson College community members to contribute single lines towards a collective “abecedarian.” Professor Beasley’s students from ENG 203 (Introduction to Poetry) and ENG 301 (Creative Nonfiction) were anchoring contributors. An abecedarian is a poem, essay, or story organized using the sequencing structure of the alphabet. This is the resulting creative text, which was also read aloud as part of the symposium’s closing ceremonies.
Of Nourishment and Hunger: An Abecedarian Recipe Book for (and by) Davidson College
A place to find yourself.
Add two cups of community and a teaspoon of care.
Beat together until thoroughly mixed; add just a pinch of collaboration, to taste.
Bake together a hot Carolina sun and warm red brick.
Constellations emerge brushed to being by the night over warm-lit library, drowsy dorms.
Collaboration for community care together working towards causes.
Davidson’s culture and community are never detrimental; don’t ever think one isn’t welcomed or embraced on this campus.
Dining dollars dwindling as the semester comes to a close.
Do the impossible.
Everyone’s favorite Commons occasion: Chicken Parm Day.
Eat out every day because your girlfriend asks you to, and you serve at her pleasure.
Flour should be mixed thoroughly with other ingredients, not separated to one part of the (whole) bowl.
F memories I don’t remember.
Gorgeous grass but requires frequent lawn care and management—try not to be bothered by the constant noise of lawnmowers and other loud machines.
Grill until just right; golden should be the color, like the faces of those finished with finals.
Guacamole served on a paper plate.
Half parts, “Hey there!” and “I choose to care”: how to hone a humane kind of honor.
Having kind friends will help congeal the mixture to completion.
Incorporate one plateful of Commons fries at least once a week.
Ice cream the color of marshmallow sky.
Juice all of the fruits of this place, for there are trees and wisdom everywhere.
Jalapenos jumping around in my mouth as I watch the baseball game.
Jovial children from the community walking around campus.
Kitchin’s kitchen, my family’s warmest space; known for my pasta, my father’s jams and jellies, and my mother’s everything.
Kitschy kiddos overly developed, undergrown (one position).
Leaving for a brave new world.
Lonely, in my experience, or a longing for solitude among those you revere.
Little stroll down to Main Street Books for a new point of view.
Mix strong community with strong academics and great weather!
Move along, masters of arts and science—follow the red bricks to class.
New friend waiting to be met wherever you try something new.
Nearly all of my favorite restaurants are in Davidson.
Nestle amongst the redwood, pecan, and sugar maple trees.
Next mash it all up in a 30-foot-wide mixing bowl; after mashing, add fifteen gallons of water and a single peach leaf; stir till the leaf is lost in the mixture.
Outdoor hammocks decorating the trees, even when the leaves aren’t.
Open your mind, embrace the highlights and lowlights of your journey through time, embrace possibilities and opportunities that come to you; this is your life, embrace it with purpose!
O is for the omnipresent legacy of enslaved brick makers whose fingerprints are often invisible to the casual visitor but are symbols of resilience for their descendants and BIPOC community on campus.
Pour three cups of welcoming friends and professors.
Pour three cups of passionate professors.
Pickled Peach’s white-bean hummus sandwich: a subconscious reason I chose Davidson.
Quaint: “Welcome to Davidson, we hope you enjoy our state-of-the-art facilities along with our quaint little town”—Davidson Admissions
Quiet is one way to be a student, but I’d rather hear all that you have learned.
Radical centrism in the face of stark, obvious injustices that hit too close to home.
Rest easy, but not THAT easy; breathe not your last breath but like it is your very first; let it in, let it be; whichever shall pass, whichever shall stay.
Rising sun through the wall that wakes me promptly at 7.
Sprinkle in a cup of wisdom, one large smile, a shoulder to lean on, a community worth investing in, and a whole lot of kindness.
Sunny afternoons spent on Chambers lawn with friends.
Sift in one cup of late-night walks; if you encounter a raccoon…run.
Tilapia terrorizing first-year students.
Take a dash of honor and a pinch of pride to add to the mix.
Take a breath, understand your value.
Uncharted experiences of newfound freedom interplay with the hopes of tomorrow.
Until cool, allow to sit inside Nummit and order coffee.
Vary your schedule, never see the same combo of people while on a walk.
Vibrant desire to learn, branch out, and take a few chances.
Wildcats, dear Wildcats, what’s your usual—your order, your food of choice?
When the mixture congeals, you know the interviewer, application reviewer, and peers will love you.
Welcoming minds, brimming with enthusiasm and curiosity.
X marks the spot on the map of life, a place of refuge and preparation for the next unknown journey.
Xs that I see while walking: I turn and X is there; at Commons, X is eating; X, go away.
Yellow butter makes sticky fingers sweet; sticks them to mine, and to the sugar.
You only need a bit of imagination to make the best dish.
Yellow skies and grass of tiles, chambered sanctuaries whisper, “come inside.”
Zen not found.
Zoom fuel recipe: granola bars off-screen, dry cereal, and Keurig coffee.
Zest with love, confidence, self-esteem, and lots of breathing.