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Kitchen monster

I love the garburator that is part of the sink apparatus in our townhouse. Love it, but rarely use it now because we’ve been asked not to in favor of collecting our organic scraps for recycling and conserving water. (For those not familiar with this gadget, you run water as you feed organic stuff down the sink into the garburator with its blades that grind scraps tiny and send them on their way to join the rest of the sewage.)

Much as I liked it,  I also found it to be temperamental in that it didn’t like scraps of a certain kind. Potato and carrot peelings were the worst. More than once it plugged up on me in the middle of preparing for guests. Yikes!

potato-skins-344185_640

(Image: ariesa66 / Pixabay.com)

 

Kitchen Monster

My handy kitchen monster’s maw
loves peels and water, stems and pits
but if I make it eat too fast
it goes into its little fits.

Sometimes it chokes
on pip or core
plugs up the sink
backwash—“No more!”

Then I must soothe
its circle lips
with Heimlich cup
of icy chips.

It growls mechanic
cough “Ahem!”
then swallows all
its veggie phlegm.

© 2016 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

 

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Poetry Friday LogoThis post is linked to Poetry Friday, a collection of poems and poetry-related posts for your Friday reading pleasure. Poetry Friday is hosted today by Keri at Keri Recommends.

 
16 Comments

Posted by on January 15, 2016 in Light, Objects, Personal, Poetry Friday

 

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Thanksgiving Lunch at the Mennonite Church

Pie

(Photo © 2015 by V. Nesdoly)

Thanksgiving Lunch at the Mennonite Church

We’ve been smelling coffee for a while now
as the sermon drones on and on but finally
it’s benediction time and “Thanks
for the food we are about to partake. Amen.”
Old and young crowd down the stairs
to the warm, fragrant basement
claim chairs at the long table
where we usually have Sunday School.

The food committee hovers in the kitchen
as we start filling plates with potato and jello salad
zwieback and butter, sliced tomatoes, cheese
homemade dills, platters of cold pink ham
roast beef, plump fried chicken.
Soon they come with coffee and tea in steaming kettles
then serve plates of pie—apple, cherry, chocolate
lemon meringue, peach, rhubarb, raisin.

Chairs push back. Farmers swap stories
of combine breakdowns and how many
bushels of oats and wheat to the acre.
Women tell of covering the tomatoes
before last Tuesday’s frost, how Suzy’s not liking school
and did you know Adilman’s has a sale on winter coats?
Kids play tag, hide-and-seek
dash between legs back to the table to snitch
sugar cubes, pickles, pieces of cheese
while the food crew clears the end of the table
nearest the kitchen, gathers up
their twelve basketfuls of leftovers
and lingers over their Thanksgiving lunch.

© 2015 –  Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

 

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Though in Canada we celebrated Thanksgiving in Canada over a month ago, I post this today in honor of the U.S. Thanksgiving celebration. Happy Thanksgiving to all my U.S. friends!

We did a lot of eating in our small town Saskatchewan Mennonite Church but I remember that the Thanksgiving spreads were particularly sumptuous, and loaded with enough pie to last till Christmas!

When I think about my upbringing, I am full of gratitude for the seeds of faith that were planted in it, and the example of service I saw in the adults around me.

spiritual-journey-framed

Join us each week at Spiritual Journey Thursday

This post is part of Spiritual Journey Thursday, a series of reflections on my spiritual journey.

Poetry Friday LogoThis post is also linked to Poetry Friday, hosted today by Carol at Carol’s Corner.

 
14 Comments

Posted by on November 26, 2015 in Personal

 

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SJT – Mercy (In the DNA)

Mercy is one of those words we bandy about so freely in Christian culture, it becomes almost invisible. I gained a fresh appreciation of its richness when I looked it up in the dictionary before writing this post:

Mercy:
1. Kind or compassionate treatment of an offender, adversary, prisoner etc. in one’s power; compassion where severity is expected or deserved.
2. A disposition to be kind, forgiving, or helpful.
3. A thing to be thankful for.

Mercy comes from compassion, kindness or other ennobling sentiments.

Opposites of mercy are harshness, severity, implacability, punishment, chastisement, vengeance. – Funk and Wagnalls Dictionary

It’s what God had for us when He sent Jesus and had Him take the penalty our sins deserved. It’s what I’m supposed to extend to others. And there’s the rub. For like so many Christian qualities, showing mercy is counter-intuitive. It goes against every atom of fairness to let the person who hurt me get off free. Look at how the crowds clamber for justice when a policeman has shot someone in the line of duty. Suggest mercy to that crowd and you’re likely to start a riot. It’s in me and all of us to want to get even, to make things right with our own style of justice.

I was pondering why we, or at least I, find that giving mercy is hard. I think it has something to do with feeling that I’m giving up control. When Christians extend mercy, we give up control to God. We’re saying with our actions that we believe He has the situation in hand and will sort it all out fairly in the end, better than our scolding, punishment, or tit for tat ever could.

The Bible story that illustrates this beautifully is David’s behaviour when his father-in-law and deadly enemy King Saul is hunting him. One day David finds himself in the cave with Saul. His men tell him, This is your chance.  Take matters into your own hands and kill him.

He resists them, and instead, just cuts a piece off Saul’s robe to prove how close he was. Later even that seems to bother him. 1 Samuel 24:1-12 where this story is told, ends with these telling words from David to Saul:Let the Lord judge between you and me, and let the Lord avenge me on you. But my hand shall not be against you” (emphasis added).

The challenge for me is to get to the place where extending mercy becomes my default position. I want it to be in my DNA.

Kale

“I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food” – Job 23:12 (Photo of kale from Pixabay.com)

In the DNA

We bite into apples
bread, cake, meat
taste, chew, swallow.
They disappear, digested
become absorbed into muscle, bone
fingers, toes, skin, lashes
brain cells, our very DNA.

We bite off Your word
Blessed are the merciful …
   Be reconciled to your brother …
   Forgive up to seventy times seven …
meditate on these things
swallow them into the busyness of our days
Now that they’ve been ingested
are they being digested
becoming the muscle, bone, skin
of loving acts, kind words, patience
mercy, forgiveness
altering our very DNA?

© 2015 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

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spiritual-journey-framedThis post is linked to Spiritual Journey Thursday, hosted by Holly Mueller at Reading, Teaching, Learning. Today the theme is MERCY.

 

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When life hands you a lemon

Lemon

Lemon (Photo – RGB Stock.com)

When life hands you a lemon

You are not holding a mistake
reject, or serene yellow egg
but a blonde grenade
that explodes puckering sour
all through your mouth
acid that pales
pear, apple and peach
squeeze that brings to attention
potato, souvlaki, calamari.
Its zesty shrapnel trademarks
loaf and pie, square, drop and tart.
The pungent oil its leather hide releases
sweetens even garburator’s rancid breath.

Life, hand me more!
I could use a whole arsenal
of this kind of ade.

 

© 2015 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

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This poem had its beginnings on Today’s Little Ditty, Michelle Heidenrich Barnes’ blog where her excellent interviewee children’s poet Nikki Grimes ended her interview by challenging writers with a prompt. From ten possible prompt words, I chose “Lemon.” (Read the interview and prompt HERE.)

 
9 Comments

Posted by on May 21, 2015 in Objects

 

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National Poetry Month #eatingpoetry

Welcome to April and National Poetry month! What are you planning to do to celebrate poetry this month?

  • Attend a poetry reading?
    If you’re in the Vancouver area / Lower Mainland, you’re invited to ours. The Fraser Valley Poets Society‘s April event is a Blue Moon Reading, April 13th (6:30-8:30 p.m. Clearbrook Library, 32320 George Ferguson Way, Abbotsford, B.C.).

Yours truly is the featured reader that evening. I’ll be reading from Borrowed Gardens, the anthology that three friends and I published in December 2014. (There’s a small sampling of the poems in the book here.)

There will also be an open mic following the Blue Moon feature, so bring a several of your own poems to read.

Poetry Month Poster - League of Canadian Poets

Fragment of the League of Canadian Poets Poetry Month Poster – 2015 (click on image to enlarge)

The League of Canadian Poets has suggested the wonderful theme of FOOD for this month’s poetry. To go with that theme, here is a poem about one of my favourite childhood treats:

 

Puffed Wheat

Puffed Wheat—my generation’s Cheerios
for baby’s highchair tray.
Wheat grains magically blown up
beige-speckled, quarter inch
elongated puffs, tiny bums.

I didn’t like them as cereal
that I had to eat in a rush
before they shrunk small, slimy
and sticking to teeth when I sipped
the sweet speckled milk dregs
from the bottom of the bowl.

But a concoction of butter, cocoa
sugar and syrup cooked
hot enough to brand skin
poured over 8 cups in Mom’s enamel roaster
mixed frantically with a wooden spoon
before the sticky mass congealed to stiffness
then warm-pressed into a buttered pan
made the best birthday cake
in the world!

© 2015 by Violet Nesdoly (all rights reserved)

Share your food poems with other Canadian poets using the hashtags #eatingpoetry and #NPM15

 
2 Comments

Posted by on April 1, 2015 in Objects

 

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Two halves

pie

Two halves

A bigger half
is mathematician’s
impossibility.

But such a thing
when cutting pie
ever a probability.

© 2014 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

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Today, January 23rd, is National Pie Day! I’m sure the Pie Council won’t have a problem with prolonging the celebrations into Poetry Friday.

The little poem (above) was one of my November poem-a-day efforts. Given my disability in the pie-cutting department, I’m thinking probably the best way to divvy up the pie, at least at my house, is to make individual pies for each person!

And here to help with your next pie party are some pie-making tips from the aforementioned Pie Council.

Poetry Friday LogoThis post is part of Poetry Friday, hosted today by Tara at A Teaching Life.

 
19 Comments

Posted by on January 23, 2014 in Light, Objects, Poetry Friday

 

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Appetite Affair

artisan flatbread

“Bewitched by bread”

Appetite Affair

Adore apples
Bewitched by bread
Charmed by chocolate
Delight in doughnuts
Esteem eggs
Fall for fajitas
Go for grapefruit
Hold hamburger in high regard
Idolize ice-cream
Just crave jam
Kiss kasha goodbye
Love lava cakes
Mad for muffins
Nibble noodles
Over head and ears in love with olives
Passionate about peanut butter
Quest for quesadillas
Relish raspberries
Sweet on salsa
True to tomatoes
Unfaithful to upside-down cake
Venerate vegetables
Welcome waffles
X a meal? Never!
Yearn for yogurt
Zealous for zucchini

© 2012 by Violet Nesdoly

poetry+friday+button+-+fulllThis is pure silliness. I wrote it for the prompt of “love” during the 2010 November poem-a-day challenge.

This poem is submitted to Poetry Friday, hosted today by the very Etsy, I mean artsy Robyn Hood Black.

 
24 Comments

Posted by on December 7, 2012 in Abecedarium, Light, Poetry Friday

 

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