A Tasty Treat
I'm on a writing retreat this weekend. I extended an invitation to local Orangeville writer, Lynda MacDougall, to share a piece of her delightful personal writing with us and she generously agreed! Enjoy!
A Piece Of Cake
When I was little, I don’t mean the kind of little I am afraid I will become as I age past sixty-six. I mean little heard, little cared about, little influence, a woman becoming less and less until I disappear in the dirt. The other little. The one when I was surrounded by family around a farm table.
At birthdays, with the kitchen light dimmed, a two layered chocolate on chocolate creation with candles was set in the centre for all to see. The cake had a round piece carved in the middle for the birthday kid and slices, like spokes on a wheel, radiating out for others. Inside each slice was a treasure wrapped in wax paper - a baby pin, maybe, or a penny, or a colourful button.
Do you know this cake?
I carry this magical wheel cake buried somewhere deep inside me. A remembrance of when I was little, then became big, and somehow between 2019 and now started to feel little again. Unsure of my treasures. A piece on a plate instead of part of something whole.
Sometimes the news of the day sneaks up on me. It troubles and saddens me. It’s like there is nothing magical in the centre of us so we don’t bother to come to the table and sit down together anymore.
I like to think Beverley McLauchlin, the former Chief Justice of Canada, was a baker. She spoke about how Canada was not like the United States. “We are not pieces of cake. We are a part of a cake.” Actually, that’s not what she said. But that is what I hear and that’s what I can almost taste when I read the Canadian Charter of Rights.
I do not bake. But I have sat around tables and encouraged others to unwrap their wax paper treasures. And I wonder, if we put all of these together, what sort of powerful difference we could make in the world.
Lynda McDougall is a retired teacher, story-teller and owner of a dazzling array of ukuleles. She plans on singing along with others until the landscape around us is different.