Sunday, June 9, 2013

Birthday Cake

The other day I made a cake for a woman in the parish to celebrate her birthday. She has done a fine job raising her children and grand-children and she is always shepherding them as best she can. She frets that she cannot do more for them and she is always thinking about the formation of others. She is a good-hearted person who gives a great deal to others. I wanted to give something to her that was uniquely hers so I baked her a yellow cake and whipped up some white frosting so that it was very light and airy. I brought it to her before Mass and we had a piece of cake in her garden to celebrate. I wrote about our time together:

She sat there

a suppressed smile ready to erupt,
but she tucked it away.

Sipping on tea amidst her garden’s glory,
she basked
and picked more ‘nana’ for her brew.

Her long breaths without labor,
she sat tall like a gladiola
blushing bright colors through her cheeks,
and she longed for butterflies to pass her way.
In the gentle breeze, two came,
the same whiteness as the icing on her cake,
and she toiled and spun without care
as time stood still to honor her special day.

And she reached for a second piece.


  1. How lovely! To give and to receive, this is good eucharistic theology as lived, not just theorized!

  2. I stand in awe of your talent of expression in so many artistic media, John. God has blessed you abundantly and you have blessed others sharing your gifts. Awesome!

    1. Thanks, Kathleen. I'm just discovering how to use them. I kept them compartmentalized; now I have to integrate them.

  3. What a gift you have given this woman - to recognize her for the wonderful person she is! You then received the incredible gift of being present with her while she basked in the joy of your gift. Then we also have been blessed with this beautiful story of amazing kindness. Thank you for sharing your gifts.

    1. Thanks, Lynda. I think I received more than she did.

    2. John, that is often the case that we receive more than the person to whom we give a gift. I wonder if that is how God feels since God is the giver of all gifts. I suspect that God rejoices even more than we do when we accept gratefully the gifts that God provides for us.

    3. I do believe God is grateful when we accept what God offers. It must make God smile.