{pf: poetry peeps serve up…something}

Greetings! Welcome to another Poetry Peeps adventure on Poetry Friday!

Poetry Peeps! You’re invited to our challenge in the month of December! Here’s the scoop: we’re thinking outside of the BOX. Or, maybe into the BOX? Freely indulge in any kind of poem, but our theme is a box, boxes, or even boxing. Maybe you’ll try a 4×4 poem, creating another kind of box? Whatever your desire, let BOX inspire! You have a month to craft your creation and box it up on December 30th in a post and/or on social media with the tag #PoetryPals.

This is one of those fun poetry assignments that I wish I had more time to do, but — as I write this, it’s Tuesday, kids, and I volunteered to make something complicated for Family Thursday, so I need to get started, AND we’re supposed to take actual with-a-tripod family pictures and I have to dig out the requisite color theme (navy and white this year) AND I said I’d write a mini reader’s theater and bring games I have yet to unearth, I, who moved house five weeks ago, AND I still haven’t done my Actual, Real Work this week, and who was it that who cheerfully got me into all this extra busyness? Oh, right. …Me.


Well, writing to you from the future, I know you managed to get all you wanted to completed – including a poem to add to our roundup. These turned out to be a little harder than many of us expected, but I’m excited to see how Sara’s turned out, and Laura’s, as well as Mary Lee’s poem here. Kelly’s cooking up poetry here. Tricia’s poem is here. Liz’s poem has recipe is here, and Linda M. joins us here. Jone’s poem(s) are here. Margaret’s poem is here, and Carol V’s poem is here. As their food comas wear off and their families and guests ebb and flow, more Peeps will check-in throughout the course of the weekend, so stay tuned for the roundup. If you’d like even more Poetry Friday goodness, join the gathering at Ruth’s beautiful table @ There Is No Such Thing as a Godforsaken Town.

And, past me eventually found my recipe… and I was pleased that it didn’t turn out as saccharine and twee as I feared it would. Here’s to the footlight flutters, the little singers practicing their dreidel songs and the ones who just go on stage and freeze. Here’s to the older ones who wished they had practiced that one tricky measure just a little longer, and to the ones who can’t wait for the curtains to rise. Winter concert season is upon us all! As my days and evenings are now filled with music, I wish the same for you. Wear a mask as I do, and get out to at least hear an outdoor brass ensemble, okay? It’ll do your heart good…

Recipe for a Winter Concert

Prep time 3 months ♦ Concert Time 2 hours ♦ Serves the Soul

For best results, prepare.

Take one set of singers, seasoned.
Stir lightly into a stew of scales –
Do – Re – Mi- Faaaa – ahem – aaaa
Gently stretch vocal chords until pliable.
Hydrate singers. (Drain.)
In listed order, add airs, ballads, and madrigals.
(For spice, a single shanty is more than sufficient.)
Layer in lieder and carols. Add a pinch of recitative.

Gather six part strings to four parts horns
add two parts timpani. Reduce to a symphonic syrup,
And measured notes into voices, sprinkle in beats
Until the mixture gels. Repeat.

As soon as music caramelizes, then
Combine the sound of twenty-one strings –
Lightly – against a single oboe’s song.
Simmer until sour notes shimmer, sweeten.

Add a prepared chorus, steeped in song
And stir fully.

For Topping:
Fold individual human beings
Into an audience –
Scatter applause until covered.
Whisk up the curtain,
And slice the baton
Through the waiting air –
And serve it forth.

Nutrition Information:
Makes one concert.
Serves the heart,
Feeds the soul.
100% fat free! Contains endorphins.

Best enjoyed with open ears
(and well-fitted masks.)

Happy Days of Deliciousness in whatever form they arrive for you.

20 Replies to “{pf: poetry peeps serve up…something}”

  1. This! All of it! (But especially “contains endorphins”…and every word that comes before that phrase.) Printing this one out for my notebook so I can go back to it again and again.

    You are a wonder, dear Cousin!

  2. This! All of it! (But especially “contains endorphins”…and every word that comes before that phrase. Printing this one out for my notebook so I can go back to it again and again.

    You are a wonder, dear Cousin!

    1. @Liz Garton Scanlon: I’m so glad you like it. I think the funniest thing about this whole assignment – which I have a vague idea was one of mine – is that I am HORRIBLE at writing down recipes, so this really took effort to, like, REMEMBER what someone might need to cook something! I’m glad it turned out!

  3. I may be late for the event but at least I brought an offering. Your recipe poem is delicious. Lines that I love: Directions: As soon as music caramelizes – Add a prepared chorus, steeped in song/And stir fully
    Topping: Fold individual human beings/Into an audience
    The graphic is clever as well.
    Thanks for sharing your poetry goodness even when you are swamped with the busyness of the holidays.

  4. Oh my heavens, Tanita, I am swooning! From “Serves: souls within hearing” to “Contains endorphins,” with “As soon as music caramelizes” (yes!) along the way, this is funny and perfect and true. Thank you for doing your “real work” in the world, and I hope Present You is appreciating Past You despite her overcommitments! I certainly am.

  5. This is terrific Tanita, it gelled harmoniously!!! I love the oboe, they have such a lovely sound, and you decked it out with wonderful, season-filled curtains too! Wow, I’m smiling and laughing, thanks for this delicious performance, encore please!

  6. There’s so much I love here. I applaud the fact that you got “and serve it forth” in here. I completely forgot that we started with this notion and eventually morphed into recipe poems. I love the sections of the poem and how they really bring it all together. Just like music, your poem “Serves the heart/Feeds the soul.”

  7. Hahaha. I LOVE the slightly disdainful voice in, “(For spice, a single shanty is more than sufficient.)” And the slicing the baton. And, and, and. You worked in so many cooking/baking terms. Amazing! You are a song, Tanita!

    1. @saralewisholmes: I think it’s going to be my November tradition to write a poem about how concert prep is going – it’s right on my mind the whole month, so I might as well. I’m so glad it sounds joyful – I don’t want to make it sound like a complaint, it IS a joy. And a lot of “cooking.”

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