Auld Lang Syne

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Day 17 Poetry prompt.... your family

Today my maternal grandmother would be 105 (mom 85, me 65, twin daughters will be 45 this year... thus a generational 20 year span of eldest daughters on that side).

So why not write about a family member today? Go ahead and do it.

Here is a poem about my Nana (this is a fictionalized event... you do not have to tell the literal truth in order to tell a greater truth)

Lemon Cake

First you need great bowls

and a big spoon. Measuring

is easier with Nana’s teacups

the ones graduated

to your kitchen after her funeral.

It was all you wanted.

She used no recipe for lemon cake,

taught you to measure the heft

of flour in your palm, to see

how much lemon juice fills

the teacups, to know a pinch

from a smidgeon just by feel.

A pinch of cardamom, one

of nutmeg, a dusting of poppy seeds

over the wet mixture. She mixed

clockwise, said the sun travels

that way and helps the mixture

to rise just so to the rim of the pans.

For frosting, a package

of softened cream cheese, a splash

of vanilla and one of lemon juice.

Whip in half a hand of sugar

with the egg beater she got

as a wedding present in 1926.

Later, sit in your chair by the window,

listening to the rain come in gasps,

you will know her love is in the recipe

she never wrote out, the one pressed

into your hands, and in the teacup

you use tonight for tea.

Smell the lemons, smell her verbena.

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