Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Sunday. The day I worship at the hob
and stove. Unholy music of the kitchen
rocks from Spotify, my phone
in a Pyrex jug speaker. Sweet Child of Mine.

One is out running over the hills, far
away from weekend crowds that choke
Dovestones with their chatter, abandoned
masks and plastic bags. Barbecues.

I decide on pork today, roast a leg joint
with potatoes and parsnips, carrots,
cauliflower, make stuffing like mum used to
with a full onion, Paxo, gravy granules.

The other’s at the Buddhist centre
learning to attain enlightenment.
I often think he’s got there, the way
he sails through days without hearing me.

My son’s requested pudding. Real
throwback stuff with custard. Cake tin buttered,
sugared, the trick of extra flour, pineapple
juice from the tin, all whisked to perfect

lightness, carefully poured over wheels
of pineapple and maraschino cherries.
They’re both here for the turning out,
the way it drops from tin to 60s plate

has them in awe of me. My legs and back
don’t know which hurt most. There’s so much
washing up to do. I make myself a coffee,
take my meds. Call the Midwife.



Hilary Robinson has an MA from MMU. She’s been published in Strix, Riggwelter, Obsessed with Pipework, Poetry Birmingham, Morning Star and The Interpreter’s House. Her debut pamphlet, Revelation, was published in June 2021 by 4Word.