Hotdish – A Poem About Food

Hotdish
by Ron Olsen

God bless hotdish
It kept us alive
But first we’d pray
Our Sunday morning ritual
Praying
To get through it all
For just one more day

We meant it too
We were so unworthy
The Vicar told us
And vile
And ungrateful
Not worthy to “gather up the crumbs” under His table
Which we really didn’t need
Truth be told

We had hotdish

Plenty of it
Stronger than theology
And tasty too

Tuna
Noodles
And sour cream
Pimentos
Olives
A splash of milk with a can of soup
Mix it together
Crush some potato chips on top
A sprinkle of paprika for an exotic edge
Throw it in the oven
And there you go

Salt and pepper
To give it taste
Bracing your blood to stand up
To the demon weather
Wailing outside
Begging you to come out
So it could try and kill you one more time

But we had hotdish
Made by the Ladies of the Ladies Aid
Who knew what they were doing

Big, strong German and Scandinavian farm ladies
With secrets they brought over from the old country
Arriving with only their bibles, babies and the family jewels
Bending over stoves
In the Episcopal Guild Hall basement
The heat flooding out to envelop the entire room

Making heavy, hearty, homemade hotdish in
Big Pyrex glass baking dishes
Doing their part
To keep the kids and the cardiologists going

And just as you were about to burst with joy
Unworthy as you were
There was even more to come
Through the passthrough and out into the main hall

Giant bowls of green and yellow Jell-O, wiggling and jiggling with life
Bits of cottage cheese suspended inside
And green olives
Molded in the shape of pinwheels
Or Christmas trees
Or peculiar giant half-moon shaped fish with big scales

And the old men would watch
Mumbling under their breath
“Damn kids don’t know how good they’ve got it…”

So we prayed to be forgiven
And were mindful of the need to be always alert
If the weather didn’t kill you some crazy old man might
Or you could fall through the ice and drown a horrible death in the lake

And all the while the wind screamed
Threatening to take your soul

And it might have
Except for the hotdish

Neither the north wind
Nor the crazy old men dared cross
The ladies of the Ladies Aid
Who knew exactly what they were doing

                © Ron Olsen – all rights reserved

 

malibu

Ron Olsen is a semi-retired journalist who lives in Los Angeles

and writes essays and an occasional poem.   He drew upon his

youth in Minnesota, for “Hotdish,” which he says, he no longer

has the courage to eat.   You can see more of his poetry here at

Artvilla, or at his website at http://workingreporter.com/poetry

Bon appetit


Posted in art music poetry Tagged with: , ,

Protactinium, poem from the “Periodic Table of Poetry” series, (#91, Pa) from the Chicago poet Janet Kuypers

Protactinium

Janet Kuypers

from the “Periodic Table of Poetry” series (#91, Pa)
7/1/14

Wanted to talk about P A,
element ninety one,
but gotta keep this brief,
because the first people
who discovered an isotope
of element ninety one
found it had had an
insanely short half life,
so they wanted
to name it “brevium”.

Than again,
after a German scientist
found another isotope
with a much longer
half life,
they figured that maybe
they’d try “protoactinium”,
because this element
is the progenitor of element 89,
Actinium, because
when element ninety one decays
and loses and alpha particle,
Actinium (element 89) is created.

But proto-actinium?
That still sounds
a little long,
maybe we can remember
that brevity
of the one isotope’s
short half life
and call it
Protactinium
instead.

But really,
this stuff’s radioactive
and highly toxic,
and no one has found
a single use for this element
besides maybe scientific research.
But right now they’ve discovered
when measuring the ratios
of Protactinium and Thorium isotopes
in ocean sediments, they can
reconstruct the movements
of bodies of North Atlantic water
during the melting of the last ice age.

Kind of cool.
But an ice age can take
millions of years.
Hardly brief,
like the first isotope
discovered of Protactinium.

But who knows,
maybe if Protactinium
is only good to us humans
for scientific research,
maybe we will
start to learn some cool stuff
about Earth’s past —
and maybe Earth’s future —
thanks to a brief little element
we otherwise have no use for…

Posted in Janet Kuypers, Janet Kuypers Poems, Periodic Table of the Elements Poems, Poetry Performance, Poetry Posts, Poetry Reading, Poetry Recitals, Poetry videos Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Connecting to Infinity Poem by Marilyn McIntyre

connecting to infinity….

possibilities, outcomes
floating weightlessly
irridescent, intangible
mapped in stars
touching down
as pixie dust
and flirts of angel hair
choices to the right
paths to the left
someone has stolen the fork
in the road
moon cast wrinkles
characters “˜cross the lawn
where oh where
has my little mind gone
garrulous cotton candy clouds
griping frenzy
whisps of knowledge
ancestral crones
weeping, moaning heart in tears
annoint myself in
dandelion down
roll my head
in passing nimbus
connecting to infinity
again and again and again and again……..

connecting to infinity….

possibilities, outcomes
floating weightlessly
irridescent, intangible
mapped in stars
touching down
as pixie dust
and flirts of angel hair
choices to the right
paths to the left
someone has stolen the fork
in the road
moon cast wrinkles
characters “˜cross the lawn
where oh where
has my little mind gone
garrulous cotton candy clouds
griping frenzy
whisps of knowledge
ancestral crones
weeping, moaning heart in tears
annoint myself in
dandelion down
roll my head
in passing nimbus
connecting to infinity
again and again and again and again……..

Posted on January 6, 2005

Posted in art music poetry, Guest Poets, Marylyn McIntyre, Poetry Posts

How to Make Calligraphy

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How to Make Calligraphy
Here is a Google search for How to make Calligraphy

Posted in Art Lessons