Dinner · General

Rootbeer Pulled Pork & And An Ode to A Beat Poet

I was lucky to have parents who introduced me to so much art so early in life. I remember the night Dad handed me Mom’s copy of R.D. Laing’s Knots. I remember something inside my brain unlocking.

I remember when I devoured Endgame by Samuel Beckett in one afternoon.

And I remember reading Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s Coney Island Mind on the dock of my grandparent’s summer home in Okoboji, Iowa one summer a lifetime ago. One of the last summers I had before obligation became year round.

We lost a pioneer yesterday. In some ways it feels like we lost a soothsayer. In some ways it feels like the burden on the empathetic hasn’t changed in seventy years. Sometimes, it feels worse. Lawrence Ferlinghetti spoke to my parent’s hearts when that sat in the dim light of Barrymore’s Bar in Lincoln while they fell in love. And he spoke to my heart when I sat in the sun listening to distant rumbles of fishing boats. It speaks to me still, as I sit on my couch in the few moments of time I have in the middle of my day while my daughter naps. Maybe he’ll speak to you. Oh, and there’s a great recipe for slow cooked pork at the end.

I am waiting for my case to come up

and I am waiting

for a rebirth of wonder

and I am waiting

for someone to really discover America

and wail

and I am waiting

for the discovery

of a new symbolic western frontier

and I am waiting

for the American Eagle

to really spread its wings

and straighten up and fly right

and I am waiting

for the Age of Anxiety

to drop dead

and I am waiting

for the war to be fought

which will make the world safe

for anarchy

and I am waiting

for the final withering away

of all governments

and I am perpetually awaiting

a rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the Second Coming

and I am waiting

for a religious revival

to sweep through the state of Arizona

and I am waiting

for the Grapes of Wrath to be stored

and I am waiting

for them to prove

that God is really American

and I am waiting to see God on television

piped’ onto church altars

if only they can find

the right channel

to tune in on

and I am waiting for the Last Supper to be served again

with a strange new appetizer

and I am perpetually awaiting

a rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for my number to be called

and I am waiting

for the Salvation Army to take over

and I am waiting

for the meek to be blessed

and inherit the earth

without taxes and I am waiting

for forests and animals

to reclaim the earth as theirs

and I am waiting

for a way to be devised

to destroy all nationalisms

without killing anybody

and I am waiting

for linnets and planets to fall like rain

and I am waiting for lovers and weepers

to lie down together again

in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the Great Divide to ‘be crossed

and I am anxiously waiting

for the secret of eternal life to be discovered

by an obscure general practitioner

and I am waiting

for the storms of life

to be over

and I am waiting

to set sail for happiness

and I am waiting

for a reconstructed Mayflower

to reach America

with its picture story and tv rights

sold in advance to the natives

and I am waiting

for the lost music to sound again

in the Lost Continent

in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the day

that maketh all things clear

and I am awaiting retribution

for what America did

to Tom Sawyer

and I am waiting

for the American Boy

to take off Beauty’s clothes

and get on top of her

and I am waiting for

Alice in Wonderland

to retransmit to me

her total dream of innocence

and I am waiting

for Childe Roland to come

to the final darkest tower

and I am waiting

for Aphrodite

to grow live arms

at a final disarmament conference

in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting

to get some intimations

of immortality

by recollecting my early childhood

and I am waiting

for the green mornings to come again

youth’s dumb green fields come back again

and I am waiting

for some strains of unpremeditated art

to shake my typewriter

and I am waiting to write

the great indelible poem

and I am waiting

for the last long careless rapture

and I am perpetually waiting

for the fleeing lovers on the Grecian Urn

to catch each other up at last

and embrace

and I am waiting

perpetually and forever

a renaissance of wonder

Lawrence Ferlinghetti Friday, January 3, 2002

Rootbeer Pulled Pork

Serves: 8-10 (1 sandwich servings)

Ingredients

  • 3 lb boneless pork loin
  • 2 bottles root beer (go for the good stuff here)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Penzey’s Revolution Spice Blend: A proprietary blend of Flake Salt, Tellicherry Black Pepper, Cane Sugar, Turmeric, Minced Orange, and Coriander which you can buy (no affiliation or anything I just LOVE Penzey’s spices) by clicking that link.
  • If you can’t find or don’t have time to wait to buy Penzey’s above blend, any sort of spice mix made for slow cooking would be great – but you should definitely try Penzey’s.
  • Vegetable Oil or Neutral Oil of your choosing
  • Cliff’s BBQ Sauce or your favorite store brand
  • Weight-bearing sandwich buns of your choosing

Instruments

  • Crockpot (if you’ve got one with a probe you should dust it off for this one, if not, no worries)
  • Tongs
  • Forks (for pulling meat)
  • Medium stockpot
  • Large frying pan
  • Stirrin’ Spoon
  • Sheet pan (for bun toastin’)

Instructions

  1. Wash and pat dry your pork loin. Season on all sides liberally with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and spice blend. Rub that stuff in and plop the loin in your slow cooker.
  2. Gently pour two bottles of your finest rootbeer into the slow cooker. I didn’t pour over the top, but on the sides as to not disturb the spices.
  3. Cook on low for as long as you’d like, making sure you reach an internal temperature of at the very, very least 145 F. (If you’ve got a probe on your slow cooker, it’ll let you know when you’ve reached the minimum required time) I’d say you’re looking at, at least, four hours but the longer you cook it, the better it’ll be. I put mine in around 9am and let it do it’s thing for about six hours. You can absolutely set this before work and come back to it at the end of the day without a problem.
  4. When you’re ready, pull the pork loin out and set it on a cutting board.
  5. Carefully pour all the juices in the slow cooker into your medium saucepan and set it over high heat. Bring it to a boil and let it boil and slightly reduce for around 10 minutes or the amount of time it takes you to shred your pork.
  6. To shred the pork, I just take a big serving fork and a long eating fork. I hold the loin still with the big fork and pull down at a slight angle with the long fork.
  7. Toss your shredded pork about into the slow cooker. Pour your juices back over the shredded pork. If you’re feeling it, sprinkle the mix with some additional salt, pepper, garlic powder, and spice blend. Stir, set on low, and continue cooking at least 1 hour.
  8. Toast your sandwich buns any way you see fit. I do a little butter in the oven until golden but not hard.
  9. Get your frying pan and pour in a glug or so of vegetable oil or whatever neutral oil you are using over medium high heat. Using tongs, pull up a generous serving of shredded pork and allow the excess liquid to drip until most is gone. Toss into the vegetable oil and crispy up to your liking – this is all dependant on what you’re looking for. Your meat’s already cooked, so this is just about getting that sort of carnitas crunch.
  10. When you’ve got it to your desired crispness, pile high on your toasted bun, drizzle (or bathe) in BBQ sauce. In the summer I especially love to top this with Junior’s Cole Slaw. You can, alternatively, toss the meat in BBQ sauce after crisping it up – but a good drizzle reminds me of the best little BBQ shacks I’ve been to in KC.

8 thoughts on “Rootbeer Pulled Pork & And An Ode to A Beat Poet

  1. I loved not only exploring the recipe, but also discovering this beat poet! Thank you for posting such a different post!

    Like

  2. Lovely! I not only enjoyed discovering the recipe, but also learning of this beat poet. Thank you for doing something different!

    Like

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