Barmbrack

It was supposed to taste
of your childhood –
a childhood that I didn’t know –
I never knew you grazed-kneed,
talking excitedly, packed onto
that back bench, trapped
between a brother and a sister –

but instead, made something
different. You liked it. It was not
your childhood, rain on the windows,
warmth in the kitchen –
it was something different,
tastier, maybe, comforting
as the day fades, as the wind
rattles roudn the house –

warm cinnamon, half-melted butter
oozing off the fruited slice –
a new coziness. Isn’t that
how marriage works? We bring
our memories, make something new,
cherish the old. Relish this now.

Barmbrack is an Irish tea loaf, traditionally eaten at Halloween, with charms inside it that have various symbolic meanings. My Irish husband mentions it every Halloween, and one year I decided to bake a loaf for him. If you want the recipe, it’s here: https://www.irishexaminer.com/recipes/?c-recipeid=4079

I’m not a great baker, but this is delicious. It tastes nothing like my husband’s childhood memories, but it’s become part of our repertoire.

This is for dVerse. I’m hosting tonight, and we’re writing poems about food.

Another poem about rooks

My muse is black-feathered,
splay-winged,
harsh-voiced,
my muse rides on the wind,
dives skyward,
carousels thermals,
helter-skelters gravity,
embraces emptiness.
My muse high-wires on the topmost branch,
sees the world unrolling like a map,
follows invisible paths;
my muse is crone-wise,
midnight-cloaked,
street-smart,
free.

A quadrille for De at dVerse. The key word is muse. Regular readers will knnow I bang on about rooks a lot. Might as well shame the devil – the rook takes her rightful place as my muse in this poem.

Camellia

Your flower
a white handkerchief
fluttering in a flickering film –

your flower
open and beautiful, shivering
through wind and rain

saying nothing very much –
only that the world turns
that spring will come
that there is always something
some small light

some pale flower trembling

A poem of gratitude, for Sherry at earthweal. “Earthweal’s mantra is grief and hope.” 

Celebration!

Sometimes these are the best celebrations – the times you find yourself in someone’s kitchen, and somebody’s chopping onions, and somebody’s fixing drinks, and you’re talking and laughing, and it’s much later than you intended, and there’s nothing at all to celebrate, except this. This moment, right here right now.

cold beer
burritos
laughter

A haibun for dVerse – the first of 2022.