Spiced, as it were

I minced some words and baked them.
They were rolled out of hope,
edged with prayers and then stuffed
with love, lust, and lunacy, wonderment too.
Then I garnished them with angst,
set the heart to high
and twisted the timer to ‘trust.’
Funny, sad, ironic and salty/sweet
they are sometimes wasted but always flavorful,
if mealy, this poem I have lived thus far.

I was listening to an A Way With Words podcast when the discussion was on the word ‘minced’ and its etymological root, “min” meaning tiny. (Minimum, minuscule, mini etc.) In my head the phrase ‘minced meat,’ meaning ground beef, jumped to ‘mincemeat,’ meaning chopped nuts and fruits (as in the traditional British Christmas pie) jumped to ‘I won’t mince words,’ meaning being clear, jumped to some blended notion that ended up being the recipe (sorry, I couldn’t resist that) for this poem.

I wish I could claim “love, lust, and lunacy” (but not necessarily in that order) as my own, but I cannot. My memory tells me that I first came across them in a John Dickson Carr mystery—perhaps a Gideon Fell story—where they were listed (along with “loathing and lucre”) as the five causes of murder. But I cannot find a definitive reference for this to prove my memory. In searching the list in Google, all I can come up with is a reference to the mystery writer P.D. James’ Death Comes to Pemberley, a sequel to Jane Auten’s Pride and Prejudice. But this is surely incorrect to imply first coinage; she is a much more recent writer than Carr.

Thank you for reading Spiced, as it were. I sincerely hope you have enjoyed it and I humbly appreciate your visiting the Book of Pain. As always, I look forward to your comments.


© 2013 by John Etheridge; all rights reserved. This poem and accompanying notes are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. This applies to all original work found on this site, unless noted otherwise. The attribution claimed under the license is: © 2013 by John Etheridge, https://bookofpain.wordpress.com.


Filed under Poetry

7 responses to “Spiced, as it were

    • Julia, dear, thank you so much! It’s a short little thing, but I must say I enjoyed writing it.

      • Short crust pastry, little pieces of apple and a spoonful of sugar make a tasty dish, John – as you know, a few words are often greater than many. I do like your bee gravatar; did you draw it?

      • Oh, dang, you asked and now I have to be honest so I’ll whisper: I found it on the Internet somewhere and it wasn’t doing anything in particular and he was so nice, and bored really, that I asked him to come home and visit with me and he came and liked it so much that he has never really left. OK, it’s a scummy thing to do, I admit. But it’s not like he’s a real dog or anything and there’s a 5 year old child out there crying for their lost Poopkin. And if I’m scummy, well, at least for my consolation I am a scumbag with a really cool gravatar. That counts for something, huh?

        PS: There was no source for it or I would have written asking permission to use it.

  1. What? No left over for me? I suppose I came too late. Thank you for your words of wisdom and explanations so I can expand this miniscule mind. Tee hee. Also for the links.