Saturday, November 13, 2010

Finding Deep Joy

When I was a kid, my father's mom, my Babcia (bob cha) used to make lemon poppy seed cake.   It was light gold in color, and although the crust was thick the innards were moist and delicately fluffy.  When it was still warm she would take it out its pan and let it cool on wax paper on the counter top.  Then I could take a piece and put it in my mouth.  I used to eat it not like cake, not like food to be chewed.  Instead, I'd suck on it like good chocolate.  It would disintegrate in my mouth while firing on all pleasure centers imaginable.  It is hard to describe the taste, partially because I've lost my sense of its flavor, unfortunately and, trying to recreate it, have eaten a lot of lemon poppy seed muffins over the years.  Of course, my grandmother died in 1996.  I didn't attend her funeral.   I had some excuse to attend to, and the truth is that it was more than my torn emotions that kept me from going, though, as high school kid, I wasn't fully aware of why the instinct had manifested itself.  Later, after the state police were called at the funeral, I wasn't surprised.  I still don't know exactly what happened, except that either my father or his brother got drunk and became violent.  I tell this dispassionately because I no longer attach heavy or many emotions to it.  But I do deeply enjoy the lemon poppy seed muffins and cake that I can find around town.  I know that none of them will really get to the level that she developed, or that I experienced.  Gleboka radosc, jesli ja moge pisac to.  Deep joy.  That's it.  That's what matters.  Now, how to attain it as an adult?

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