Blueberries. Half wild for the adventurer. Half regular for what feels comfortable.
Rinse them in warm water – I feel the cold flow away from the berries. I Feel the berries warm, let the new warmth wash over my hands.
Rinse them in cold water once for my love and once for my grief. Cold water brings an anxious mind to the present.
Put half the berries in a bowl that is big enough to hold everything I thought I would have. The other half of the berries go on the stove with lemon juice. Acid. Acid makes the berries brighter. Acid hurts an open wound.
Gently cook the berries until they reduce by half. Like my children. reduced by half. Gently mash away at what is left. Break open the cooked berries to release the pectin. It helps to set what is left. It forms the gel that will keep the pie together. It holds life together.
Mix the cooked berries into the large bowl with the uncooked berries. Mix together what I thought I would have with what I actually have. Mix them gently. Add sugar and dry lemon pudding mix and a grated apple. More acid. More sweet. More pectin. I trust the sweet to overtake the acid. I trust in those that have done this before and tell me what it’s like.
I mix gently into my soul. Love into the turn. Watch life turn. Watch the child slip away. Mix her spirit and her sweet and her shine into the berries. Mix for love. Mix for loss. Mix for the grief and the whatever is beyond.
Pour more dry lemon pudding mix into the bottom of the crusted pie plate. More acid. I am told it makes the berries brighter. I trust that it makes the berries brighter.
Everything goes into the plate and the plate goes into the very hot oven. It’s seems too hot. The temperature is much hotter than other recipes and cooking techniques. This will burn. When I open the oven to put the pie in, it heats my necklace. My “Z” burns my throat for a minute.
Watch. Watch the pie change in the light. Watch life boil with the weight of the pectin that is supposed to keep it together.
Half way through, turn down the heat and rotate the pie. Release the scent into the house. The love is tangible. It’s in the air. It lingers. I can’t put it back. I can’t grab it or keep it. I can only idle in what you have at that moment. The memory of the sweet air will stay, but I can’t live that moment again. It’s so sweet, the air, that I can almost taste it. It’s so close I feel like can touch it… so close…. so close. But it’s not there. The sweet air is memory.
When the pie has bubbled for all it’s might – what’s left is not what I had. I can’t have that back. I have something different (new?).
The solemnity of the occasion allows my mind to wander and be focused at the same time. The production of the cooking and the bake yields a result I can’t find in my daily routine. In the fruit I find some escape. In the bake I find center and calm. I don’t find relief, but I do find a slowness that I need to give my otherwise racing mind.
Pie gets 5 stars. Would recommend pie.