Saturday, March 19, 2011
Poetry, Excerpt and Homemade Pies
It's National Poetry Month. I've always loved poetry, but rarely felt I could do justice to it. My son wrote most of the poetry used in Sacred Secrets, but I did manage--with his help, to write one. It was my feelings and emotions related to Father Michael's struggle. I hope you enjoy the poem, as well as the excerpt, and some great pie recipes.
Your plangent cries permeate my dreams
Lest I forget
That which I have become
Slipping into the verisimiltude
I have created
A myrmidon of evil
Panoply of secrets
Pulling me down
Into the brackish water of my dreams
‘Tis but a simple deed
To expiate my sins
Simple as life
I chose this cup
Now I must drink.
Father Michael felt the chasm widen. A vast wasteland of emptiness. Nothingness. He had nothing. He was nothing.
“Isn’t it beautiful, Father Michael?”
Father Peter’s words were a mere whisper, his hands longing to caress the parchment stored beneath the thick glass.
“Where . . .”
Father Peter turned to him excitedly. “A gift from your sister, Claire.”
Father Michael nodded. He’d recognized the painting immediately as one of John’s beautiful fakes. The Revelations of St. Bridget of Sweden. Two beams of light shone down from the hands of the Virgin and Christ, enthroned on the heavenly plane, joining into one single stream entering the eyes of the seated saint. Images were powerful in medieval times.
Father Michael lowered his head, closed his eyes. “Please . . .,” she whispered.
Images were still powerful.
Father Peter gushed on, his excitement uncontainable. “Of course, I know it’s a reproduction, but its beauty, its message is invaluable.”
A beautiful fake, just like me. Father Michael thought, the riving pain opening, surging. A raging river in which he was going to drown.
The words came from the midst of the chasm. Words he’d not intended to say. “I’ve lost all hope, Father.”
The words echoed in the small study, coming from all four corners, dowsing the sun streaming from the window, fading the colors of the parchment. Gripping the heart of Father Peter with pain.
He turned, excitement of the gift still etched upon his wrinkled face. Gasping as he gazed into open wounds, vivid pools reflecting suffering. Never before had he seen such agony. His hands fluttered in front of him, mind sifting through eighty years of life, searching for words to breach the chasm. Words of comfort.
“There is always hope, Father Michael. God is our hope.”
“I no longer hear His voice, Father.” He glanced at the painting. “No longer feel His light.”
“We must pray, my son.” Father Peter walked around the desk, placing his hand on the young priest’s shoulder. “We must pray that God will guide you in your hour of need.”
Father Michael sighed, placing his hand over the knotted arthritic joints of Father Peter’s fingers. “I have prayed, Father. I pray daily that God will take this cup from me.”
Father Peter felt the trembling in the hand covering his. Felt the despair. His words came unbidden. Words he knew not the source. Words he would ponder and regret in the days to come.
“Perhaps you must take the cup and drink from it.”
Father Michael embraced him. He had the forlorn feeling of being alone in the world. And that loneliness threatened to crush him. He whispered the words that sealed his fate. “Perhaps, Father. Perhaps I must.”
Looking for a great way to spend the weekend? Grab a good book--grab two!
The Gifts, A Jacody Ives Mystery
Sacred Secrets, A Jacody Ives Mystery
Now, let's have some homemade pie!
3 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
8 oz. frozen dairy topping, thawed
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup milk
1 prebaked graham cracker pie crust
In a large bowl, with an electric mixer combine cream cheese, peanut butter, sugar and milk. Beat until smooth. Gently fold in whipped topping. Pour into pie shell. Freeze 4 to 6 hours. Thaw 10 minutes before serving.
Sweet Potato Pie
1 large can sweet potatoes drained and mashed
1 cup sugar
1/2 stick butter
Dash of cinnamon
1 cup evaporated milk
Mix all together. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes in buttered casserole dish.
1 cup crushed corn flakes
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 stick butter
Sprinkle over top and bake 15 minutes.
Cherry Macaroon Pie
1 can cherry pie filling
1 9" crust
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. almond extract
1 1/4 cup coconut
Pour cherry filling into crust. Beat together egg and milk. Add sugar, flour, salt, almond extract and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Stir in coconut. Pour over pie filling. Bake at 375 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until puffed and light brown. Cool before serving.
Buttermilk Pecan Pie
4 cups sugar
7 Tbsp. cornstarch
3/4 cup milk
2 Tbsp. vanilla
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 sticks melted margarine
(can also add 1 tsp. lemon juice)
Mix above ingredients well with mixer. Stir in 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans. Pour mixture into 2 deep dish pie shells and bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown.
Strawberry Sour Cream Pie
2 1/2 cups strawberries
1 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. Flour
1 cup sour cream
Mix sugar, flour and sour cream. Add sliced berries. Pour into unbaked shell and bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 and bad an additional 30 minutes.
Chocolate Cream Pie
1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter or margarine softened
1 cup sugar
2 squares (1 oz. each) unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup biscuit baking mix
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all the ingredients in a blender and on high for 1 minute. Pour the mixture into a greased 9" pie plate. Bake for 3 minutes or until set. Cool before serving