Earlier this month, my husband turned the big 5-2.  When my plans to procure a German chocolate cake from a local bakery fell through, I dug out the recipe I’ve used in past years and read it over, jotting down a list of ingredients I’d need to purchase.  By the end, I realized two things:   1) baking this cake from scratch is a pain in the bananas, and 2) there is only one person in the world for whom I would do it.  Soon afterward, this Ghazal poem came spilling out, almost word for word:


I wanted to make something great for you
The world’s finest birthday cake, for you

I’d preheat the oven, line three pans with
parchment as the recipe dictates, for you

I’d cook the icing, caramelizing butter and
sugar, stirring at a constant rate, for you

I’d chop baking chocolate, melt and mix it
smooth, four large eggs separate, for you

I’d beat the batter slowly, small amounts
of flour and buttermilk alternate, for you

I’d whip the egg whites and fold them in,
Pour evenly into the pans to bake, for you

I’d watch carefully, and halfway through,
each pan’s position I would rotate, for you

I’d pull the layers at exact doneness, cool,
then freeze, the icing refrigerate, for you

I’d assemble the cake with an artist’s flair
Thick icing, all the layers straight, for you

I’d adorn it with candles, light ‘em up, and
sing!  Grab some forks and plates, for you

I’d do it all again on birthday fifty-three,
four, five, six, seven, eight… just for you

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  1. Joyce Robinson September 18, 2016 / 9:39 am

    Now that is LOVE

    Liked by 2 people

    • Just Joan September 18, 2016 / 2:05 pm

      You said it, Joyce! Climb a high mountain? Swim across the ocean? Nothing, compared to the rigors of making this cake!


    • Just Joan September 18, 2016 / 2:03 pm

      All gone. I’ll send you a reminder next year 🙂 September birthdays are awesome, huh?


    • Just Joan September 18, 2016 / 2:01 pm

      It was unbelievably moist and delicious! It was be so fun to throw a party and invite all my WP buddies 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • Tippy Gnu September 18, 2016 / 2:32 pm

        It was fun for me too. And now I am virtually enjoying the piece you sent home with me.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. L. T. Garvin, Author September 19, 2016 / 8:41 pm

    That cake looks scrumptious! But for some reason, I’m tired after reading that, ha ha. I don’t do scratch, I did a long time ago, now I go to Wal-Mart bakery. I’m sure he appreciated a homemade cake very much!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Just Joan September 19, 2016 / 8:52 pm

      It took half a day to make it, not including assembly! I like baking from scratch, but this recipe borders on ridiculous. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • L. T. Garvin, Author September 19, 2016 / 10:10 pm

        I can certainly believe that it took a half day to make! At least you have another year before it comes around again 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. chevvy8 September 23, 2016 / 4:57 pm

    I just loved your poem. Isn’t it in each of these details, ordinary or hard work as they may be that we share our love for special people in our lives. Anyway, the cake looks and sound yummy. Warm greetings to you my friend! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    • Just Joan September 23, 2016 / 5:58 pm

      So glad to see you back, Chev. Love is a whole lot of little things, as you say, the details. The cake was delish, no wonder it’s hubby’s favorite. Thanks for stopping by, hope you’ll have a chance to see what else is new on JJ42 since you last visited. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • chevvy8 September 24, 2016 / 12:38 am

        I will definitely visit again Joan. I’m still to busy to blog but it’s easier to visit my favourite people when I have a bit of time. Of course you are right about all the little things to contribute to the big picture. Take care! Chevvy

        Liked by 1 person

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