I chop and sweat vegetables for soup, an alchemist invoking the art of pulling together a family. Fragrant steam diffuses through the house Curling around the stairway Stealing under the door of my children’s rooms, Silently letting my husband know he’s loved, Soon drawing my family to the heart of our home, To sit round the table, To drop burdens, To laugh and be cherished. My grandmother’s old scales stand before me, their weights awkward: the engineering of a former time. But for me they are a portal, A keyhole to see into a dear place. As the nurturing warmth of my granny’s kitchen Enfolds me in memory The aroma of her cooking Draws me in. She too loved her family With the rich flavours Of home-made soup.