MFK fisher and Startling Appetites

There is no disputing it. Fisher was a great writer. Even Auden agreed, calling her the best prose stylist in America.

Nominally, Fisher writes about food. In fact, she is obsessed with appetites. Having them, revealing them, and satisfying them.  And her books have a certain wisdom that one obtains only by living to the fullest.

The Gastronomical Me came out in 1943 and like most of her writing consists of a series of interlinked stories.

As she explains on the first page of The Gastronomical Me, “Our three basic needs, for food and security and love, are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others.” Or, as Bee Wilson glosses it in her short, admiring introduction, “There is a liberating generosity to the way she exposes those private appetites that most of us struggle to hide. No one was ever so confident in her own hungers or so determined in her quest to satisfy them.”

It came out as a Folio edition a while back and is now re-released. If you crave a touch of boldness in your daily routines, you could do worse than dip into fisher’s wondrous prose.

Go for it!


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