Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Dear Amanda and Debbie

 from Anonymous:

I found your recipe online
and I’ve run into some problems
I’m wondering if you can help me

well first of all, it’s raining
and my husband and I
aren’t speaking
the cat hasn’t come home
for three days
we’ve run out of wine

my teenage son won’t look me in the eye
I think he’s done something terrible
my daughter has this high nervous laugh
and a heart murmur
she can't get a boyfriend or make good grades
her greatest wish in life is that she doesn’t turn out like me

the cake tin I’m using is square
and it’s supposed to be round
I think I married the wrong man
I am trying to trace it back to
the first wrong decision I made

and what sort of cake will it make
will it be moist and dense or dry
will it crumble
could I adapt this cake
to suit all purposes
weddings anniversaries funerals divorce
just how much can this cake take

I was also wondering
how do you turn this cake into something else
how do you change the substance of it
what happens if instead of cooking it
you take it outside and bury it
somewhere dark
somewhere deep

I wanted to make this cake
but I wasn’t sure how it would turn out
have you ever had that problem
amanda and debbie

have you ever woken in the night
in somebody’s arms
and felt afraid

inspired by this recipe and the comments afterwards


  1. Villanelle for a Suburb is my favourite poem (ever), but this one is a close second.

  2. Frangipani9:37 PM

    Your poem is great and the recipe is very scary.

  3. Excellent poem. And my, what a comments thread. I'd have given up food blogging long ago if I'd had commenters like that!

  4. Anonymous1:15 PM

    That is incredible. Incredible.

  5. Hi, great poem! Do you think it would also work if i read this poem outdoors while drinking red wine? What about white, would that work? I was thinking of reading it tomorrow afternoon with a cup pf tea while sitting at my kitchen table. If i substitited coffee for the tea would it take the same length of time? Please help.

  6. Anonymous8:21 AM

    Moving and wonderful.

  7. What gorgeous pictures and questions. Your thoughtful exploration is a gift to others. You point out the rainbow others miss.