pannekoeken!

Remember home’s kitchen where cheery (if gaudy) yellow & green wallpaper, Mom’s gentle love, and Dad’s loud laughter surrounded our family eating at table booth by patio window.  Every Saturday morning, my Dutch-American mother served us Swedish pancakes (like crepes) stacked with butter and syrup, or rolled up with brown sugar inside or, occasionally, topped with fresh strawberries and whipped cream.  My best childhood friend, Joyce, would come overnight on Friday to savor the next day’s breakfast.  We’d smell fried sweetness upon awakening and hurry downstairs to kitchen in our pajamas.  Between delectable bites, we would giggle over private jokes and tease my younger brother.  Now I make these favorite pancakes for my hungry boys on Saturday mornings, and they quickly eat to see who gets the last one!  Mom’s recipe (“tweaked” over the years):  3 3/4 cups milk, 4 eggs, 2 1/2 cups white flour, 4 tsp. sugar, 1/2 tsp. vanilla (cousin Ben’s addition), 1 tsp. salt and 4 TBS. cooking oil.  Heat round electric skillet to 350, spray hot pan, pour thin batter, turn once and serve warm, with love.
 

lick maple syrup

morning after sleepover

snow falling outside

 


Bjorn hosting haibun prompt where dVerse poets share special recipes…

my mother’s face

 

her warm, dark eyes

watched perceptively,

beneath arched brow.

 

framed by her thick

brunette mane, cut short

as was her retirement.

 

she wore brimmed hats

for shade so her hair color

wouldn’t fade red in sun.

 

her coiffure was her crown,

until news of lung cancer

and chemo styled dread.

 

she fell ill with infection

that took her too quickly,

before chemo could begin.

 

at least, she was spared

losing her beautiful hair;

i wish i had one lock of it.

 

matryoshka

 

on their final

European excursion,

my practical mother

bought me a simple

souvenir from some

quaint tourist shop in

Prague, a capital city,

where she and her

friends shopped

while the husbands

snapped photos –

everyone trying to

capture a memory.

 

every time i hold

these nesting dolls

i see her warm smile,

accept her gift again

(small enough to fit

my mind’s suitcase)

wondering how she

knew that her first

great-grandchild

(a boy she’d never

meet on this earth)

would ask me with

big shining eyes,

“please play?”

with the painted

miniatures of

smooth wooden

generations each

carrying the next,

blooming with bright

promise of precious

new arrival.

 

perhaps you consider

it all rather kitschy

but i cannot help but

exclaim over the wee

baby one with kisses.

 

Image

(These “matryoshka” nesting dolls are a Russian tradition, often made in China and sold as souvenirs in the Czech Republic!)

Written in response to Mary’s prompt, “looking for treasure”, at d’VersePoets.

Her hands

 

I remember sitting as a girl

in the raftered balcony of the church

during morning worship service,

craddling my mother’s hand in my lap;

 

examining creases in her warm palm,

tracing distinct veins across the back,

touching the smooth pale pink polish

on her clean, neatly shaped nails,

fingering the circle of her wedding ring;

turning its diamond to catch the light

filtering through stained glass windows,

trying to glimpse each rainbowed hue.

 

Mom thought her hands were “too large”

but those dear hands were just big enough

to shape hearts and home, to hold our family

together, with their faithful, gentle work of love.