Life is bitter. All the faces of the years,
Young and old, are grey with travail and with tears.
Must we only wake to toil, to tire, to weep?
In the sun, among the leaves, upon the flowers,
Slumber stills to dreamy death the heavy hours …
Let me sleep.
Riches won but mock the old, unable years;
Fame’s a pearl that hides beneath a sea of tears;
Love must wither, or must live alone and weep.
In the sunshine, through the leaves, across the flowers,
While we slumber, death approaches through the hours …
Let me sleep.
— William Ernest Henley, 1872
Wrote decades ago this poem exemplifies life and its nasty truth.
Life is not all sugary, but bitter sweet. Filled with stark reality that we must accept in order to move forward. There will be disappointment and anguish along the way, but once you accept this reality you can enjoy god’s gift – life itself! The bitterness might not be lost, albeit reduced.
And the bitter bits are not all that bad either, are they? They are the essence of life that teach us more than any school could ever and enable us to enjoy the sweet fruits that season along the path of life. Don’t rush them through. Enjoy those moments as well and remember them, for once you are over those you can cherish what lies ahead!
The spirit of bitterness is exemplified by bitter gourd, a vegetable that i hated as a child. The trick is to reduce the bitterness just enough to be able to enjoy it! Much like in life!
Here is a simple recipe for fried bitter gourd – let’s call it gold coins – shall we?
- Cut a couple of bitter gourd in thin round slices.
- Sprinkle some salt and keep them tied up in a napkin for 15 minutes.
- Put some weight on the napkin – don’t crush the veggies but we need to get some bitterness out of the vegetable in those 15 odd minutes.
- Next – Wash the veggies inside the napkin, twist and wrinkle the napkin a bit to get the bitter water out.
- Heat 2 table spoon oil in a deep thick bottom vessel.
- Put in some cumin seeds, mustard (should crackle in the oil), turmeric, red chilly powder, coriander powder and curry leaves.
- Put our fresh less bitter gourd slices in the oil.
- Stir fry it until the gourd slices make a rustle sound and are golden brown in colour.
- Sprinkle some coriander leaves on top and its ready to serve!
Reducing the bitterness is the key!
In life, we will need to focus on the aspects that make us happy, bring the rustle back and crackle the bitterness away just enough to enjoy gods gift – the bitter sweet life! Yes life is bitter, so what? Let’s enjoy it!