As Fall Ends

Fall leans into winter

a reminder that we

need to lie fallow

to rest and prepare

our hearts and souls

for the coming of a child

who brings peace

into our conflicted world

time of sabbath

embracing the silence

as nature renews

frost coating empty fields

denuded trees stretch limbs

into cold gray skies

a scent of snow

on the breeze

mixes with wood fire

from darkened homes

as people give thanks

resting in that peace

of knowing God’s presence

in the deep silence

that calls us to be still.

Apple Pie Lesson

Ma could bake,

pies, bread, English muffins

the smell of her baking, incense

to my nose as I walked in

on a cold fall day

as the first frosts appeared.

The kitchen was warm

as she stood there

pulling out another batch

of freshly baked cookies.

Shortly after my marriage

I needed to learn

how to make an apple pie

with crust made from scratch

so I went to her, flour in hand

show me how, don’t do, show

I asked and we went step by step.

Measuring flour, cutting in shortening

rolling out the dough, placing in pie pan

slicing apples, just right, not too thin

cinnamon, sugar, a little flour

mixing them in the apples

then placing the mix into the shell

covering it all with rolled out dough

she showed how to crimp the edges

just using a basic fork, a quick wash

then into the oven it went.

Now as I stand in my own kitchen

on a late fall afternoon

with the air crisp and cool

and leaves falling on the ground

I go through the motions 

she taught me long ago

as I cut in the shortening

roll out the dough, prepare the apples

the scent of it all baking

the incense of my youth returned.