for a year, the bottled home-made pasta sauce
sat on the shelf, tightly capped and labelled:
plum tomatoes and olive-sprayed onions and garlic,
sticking to skin of summer, fresh basil leaves licking
sunny cheeks, dash of oregano, sage and thyme
heat rekindles the fever, slow boil of regrets
skate on rim of copper pot, simmering under the lid:
sound of wild river in my ears,
firm line of hip and limbs pressed into mine,
tongue tip cresting soft lips, uncapping words
into the open sea, to where no one can shape us
into a measuring cup, sterile bottle with a label sticker:
caution, to be taken in prescribed dosage only,
keep away from direct sunlight,
and throw afar after use as it may cause
melancholy, red and thick
Updated: I am pleased to share that this poem has been included in the Winter Issue Dec. 2012 of Emerge Literary Journal.
Posted for D'verse Poets Pub: Poetics: Borg de Nobel - Part of my poem is the result of my conversation with my Italian office mate who told me their family's tradition of making home-made tomato/pasta sauce and storing them in bottles. Happy weekend to everyone ~
ha...think i want a bottle of that home-made pasta sauce...fresh basil leaves licking sunny cheeks..hmmm...nice ingredients, i have to say..ReplyDelete
I understand that its a recipe is a treasured secret...Yeah, me too ~ Thanks Claudia ~Delete
The pasta sauce sounds delicious....and the progression of the poem after that initial stanza was fascinating. I especially liked 'into the open sea, where no one can shape us.'ReplyDelete
Thanks for the lovely words and visit Mary ~Delete
Mmm... sounds quite tasty!ReplyDelete
Thanks Laurie ~Delete
dense with images and colors and sensations. I love the steady flow of this poem.ReplyDelete
Thanks for the lovely words and visit Jane ~Delete
". . . to where no one can shape usReplyDelete
into a measuring cup, sterile bottle with a label sticker"
Wow. Ultimately I think this is a poem about loss, so built into the poem as to remind me of the recipe novel "Like Water, like Chocolate" that was made into an operatic movie. Be careful of the dose of what is in that bottle, indeed. Great read.
You got my sentiments Susan ~ Thanks for the lovely words as always ~Delete
I hadn't thought it was about loss until I re-read the last stanza, now I see it. Very poignant.ReplyDelete
I was going to say this reminds me of me, making spaghetti sauce after my late partner taught me how. I make enough for 8 meals, let it cool, bottle it and freeze it.
Thanks for sharing this Bren ~ I appreciate the support ~Delete
Loss and good food, powerful fusion with the imageReplyDelete
I think I'm hungry now, and I don't just have food on my mind :)ReplyDelete
nice....you took us on a bit of a trip in this...first with the home made sauce....my roommate in college had an italian girlfriend and she could make sauce like no one else i have ever known...but from there you bring the intimacy and then turn us again in the last stanza with the throw it away as well before the melancholy...ReplyDelete
flavors fuse and inspire maybe conspireReplyDelete
From food to life, giving us a slice of life, and yeah we can surely shape our lives ourself within the open sea.ReplyDelete
The melancholy turn here is just lovely. k.ReplyDelete
Sounds good...and I love... into the open sea, to where no one can shape usReplyDelete
into a measuring cup, sterile bottle with a label sticker.
Yes, melancholy is red and thick indeed! Interesting how we chose the same picture but talked about a very different kind of bottle/jar. I really loved this image: "uncapping words / into the open sea". It kind of taps onto one image I used too. Great minds!ReplyDelete
"sticking to skin of summer"ReplyDelete
I love that. This is just really, really well done, Grace.
Wow, Grace. Loved this.ReplyDelete
throw afar after use as it may cause
melancholy, red and thick
Mmmm very nice much enjoyed.ReplyDelete
Bottled summer! Thank you!ReplyDelete
What could be better than fresh homemade sauce made by an Italian...and loved the ending...so clever. Happy weekend to you too, Grace.ReplyDelete
Oh, very nice. Your poem reminded me of something my husband, who's Italian once told me. He didn't know as a child that pasta sauce actually came in jars from the store until he was older because his mother and grandmother ALWAYS made it from scratch and stored it! I now have the recipe and have never used store bought sauce since!ReplyDelete
Treasured and protected mainly for commercial purposes. But I would rather get at my grandma's many recipes. Freely available and just as good to whet the appetite! Yummy,Heaven!ReplyDelete
"melancholy, red and thick"...beautiful words....ReplyDelete
...making me crave for tomatoes sweet and sour and love in all its richness...
Pasta and any sauce always render me sleepy. BUt this reads like a special sauce, canned/bottled to remember a special time and release a special fragrance of memory. Very nice, and if i'm not close, it was still yummy to read.ReplyDelete
oh I love the measurement/cooking angle, and that you stayed with it throughout. Awesome take on the piece.ReplyDelete
Beautifully worked from the homely and domestic to the wider - wilder - world. Fine poem.ReplyDelete
Great imagery as usual and the side effect warnings are perfect.ReplyDelete
A write rich in delicious detail. So good!ReplyDelete
a poem that tinkles the tastebuds and tugs at the heartstrings! wonderful stuff.ReplyDelete
"throw away after use as it may cause melancholy..." now that's a warning label that should be available for much of life's groceries ;)ReplyDelete
slow boil of regretsReplyDelete
skate on rim of black pot, frothing under the lid:
What great imagery!--actually great imagery throughout--!
Powerful poem, sad but a lovely way to remember... great imagery, very sensual...ReplyDelete
The sauce description brings such good and rich summer memories.......and then you so cleverly move into the human relationship. Such a rich read!ReplyDelete
Wow Heaven (or Grace :-)) this is very different from the haiku I have read of you. This is for sure a different direction in poetry. I remember that you did say that somewhere at the end of The haiku challenge of Sis that you would like to explore diifferent ways to write ... I think you have for sure found one direction ...ReplyDelete
I think we should be free to explore ourselves and stretch our writing in different ways. Just as I dislike reading posts in the same writing style and topic by other writers, I too hate that I would fall in the same rut and predictable pattern.Delete
Welcome to my other blog ~
Love the ingredients, the imagery here to embroider a great poem.ReplyDelete
this was very clever grace. but i really need to eat before i visit you. the way you describe food...i'm super hungry now! :)ReplyDelete
A rollercoaster rideReplyDelete
I love the pic, then i got hungry about the garlic
Then i went dreamy in the ocean
Then a little sad at the end
But i loved it all!
Gorgeous work, as always, Grace. Love the ending:ReplyDelete
"keep away from direct sunlight,
and throw afar after use as it may cause
melancholy, red and thick"
And also this: "the heat rekindles the fever, slow boil of regrets"
Your opening sure had my mouth watering. I love a good sauce.
Great use of art and imagery!ReplyDelete
i really like into the open sea where no one can shape usReplyDelete
slowly it had to last
This makes me want to go make some sauce of my own. ;-)ReplyDelete
I cut out a sauce recipe from the Sunday paper this week, but your mix is much spicier! I love the juxtaposition of uncapped words and sterile bottles. Just great.ReplyDelete
The last verse caught me by surprise and created an unexpected contrast, although I think it works brilliantly in practice and makes the whole poem come together. I enjoyed this, and will start to look at pasta sauce in new ways...ReplyDelete
I love how you so often bring the sea into your poems, Heaven.ReplyDelete
And this one is a stunner! You're such a great poet -- you must be from Canada, eh?? :) I like that skin of summer, beautiful image. And so glad you fall into no rut or pattern, as you write in a comment above. Poetry is too fluid for that, I agree!
Want me some spaghetti now!!