Forgive Me – A Memorial Poem

Flag

Forgive Me – A Memorial Poem

by T.J. Allen

In honor of those who sacrificed to defend our country and the ideals of freedom. On this Memorial Day; remember the fallen.

Forgive me if I do not stand up,
When they pray in somber dress and suits.
When I show no emotion at playing of taps,
Or any kind of gun salutes.

Forgive me of little move to comfort
As loved ones grieve at their loss.
Excuse the absence of tears unshed,
Though, I, all too well have felt the cost.

I understand the principled honor.
I understand the stubborn pride.
I understand the pushing forward,
When fear pushes hard inside.

I understand the courage shown
To help one’s comrades in need.
I understand the sacrifice given
I have watched our heroes bleed.

So, forgive me if I do not stand up,
When men of God shall pray.
I lie still in homage to the warrior
On whose casket I now lay.

With white gloves, I am folded,
A triangled memorial to a fallen one.
In a case or on a mantel sitting still,
Remember my daughter or my son.

Who loved honor more than life,
To protect, guard, and defend.
Forever in our hearts now cherished;
May their memory never end.

So when you see me flying high,
Over schools, banks, or capitol steps;
Remember the brave ones departed,
And the tears of the broken hearted wept.

Remember the brave living ones yet,
Whose lives are on the line for you.
Brave in the field and those at home.
Embodied, in the red, white, and blue.

Why Couscous Is Good For You – A Recipe

couscous
Israeli couscous

Just for Fun

This blog is kind of just for fun. I like to cook and it is part of my eclectic and creative life. I hope you enjoy this recipe.

A Brief History

A pearl type, grain food, couscous first appeared in culinary history in the 13th century. There are many touted benefits including cancer prevention and boosting the immune system. This food stuff consists mainly of fats more than carbs which is more desirable. (See Health Benefits of Couscous and 10 Benefits of Couscous).  It is also very tasty. It is very sticky and can be used for various recipes. My wife likes to mix the cooked couscous with chicken and spinach. If you don’t fluff up the little pearls they will stick together like rice.

A Moment of Inspiration

On a side note, I like quiche (yeah, I know, real men don’t eat quiche…uh, whatever) but, the main part of the quiche that poses a problem if you are trying to eat healthy is the crust. In a moment of wonder, I noticed the couscous becoming sticky as it cooled. I had heard the benefits of this grain and thought it might work as a crust substitute for quiche. Below is that recipe for a spinach quiche, but the couscous can be used in any quiche application. I hope you like it. Let me know what you think or what success you have with other variations at tj@thesaltyeclectic.com.

Spinach Couscous Quiche

1             Cup of uncooked couscous
5             Eggs, lightly beaten (salt and peppered to your liking)
1             Medium onion, diced
1             Bell pepper, diced (or pepper of your choice, about ½ cup)
3             Cups of cheese (More flavorful if you mix these, say, cheddar and pepper jack)*
1.5         Cups of half and half*
8             Ounces of cooked meat (ham or bacon)
1             Cup of spinach

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare couscous according to the package. (How to Cook Couscous) This should yield about 1.5 cups of cooked couscous. As it cools line a 2 quart casserole dish with couscous. You will need to pat it flat and smooth it out to make a consistent layer of “crust.” Feel free to remove some of the couscous if you feel it is too thick. I like it thick. Let cool in the refrigerator.

2016-05-18 17.59.17
2 Quart Casserole Dish lined with cooled couscous.

In a separate bowl beat eggs and half and half. Mix in onions, peppers, and cheese. In cooled couscous pan layer meat and spinach. Pour egg mixture on top of meat and spinach.

Bake in preheated oven for sixty to seventy minutes or until set. Let stand about ten minutes before serving.

2016-05-18 19.09.40
Completed Couscous Quiche

*Light or fat free cheeses and half and half can be used for a lighter quiche.

Why I Ain’t Afraid of No Ghost

Ghost Busters
Logo from the movie Ghostbusters.

Who ya gonna call?

Yes, I know the word “ain’t” isn’t proper English grammar and there is a double negative. It is just when hauntings and ghost sightings are mentioned I hear the theme from Ghostbusters start off in my head. Personally I don’t believe in ghosts per se. Okay, one Ghost, and I am not afraid of Him, but I will get to that in a minute. Let’s explore the possibility that there are or are not ghosts. As with any subject supernatural, I use the Bible as my premise and foundation.

Ghosts Defined

A ghost, as defined by Encarta Dictionary: English (North America) is “the supposed spirit of somebody who has died, believed to appear as a shadowy form or to cause sounds, the movement of objects, or a frightening atmosphere in a place.” As defined, I do not believe ghosts exist. You could probably bring to this argument, hundreds, if not thousands of arguments to the contrary. These would include haunted houses with unexplained phenomena ranging from: thumping noises to furniture moving, to cold presence, and sick owners. I could not dispute what these people have encountered. My question would be: was it ghosts? I think not.

I believe in angels, fallen angels, demons, and/or evil spirits. Nothing more. I believe that all the hauntings, evil and cold presences, sicknesses, and thumping noises are demonic in nature.

Why?

To answer this we have to go back to the beginning of creation of man and the world to the first account of fallen angels. The king of fallen angels has been called by many names throughout the years: the Devil, Lucifer, Satan, Father of Lies, the Accuser, etc. Not exactly human friendly terms. Most religions of the world have this evil being as the leader of all this evil. He not only hates God, but all that is good and created by God, especially humans.

Also in creation we can find why he hates humans so much. After God created all and saw that it was good, He created man in his image (See Being Fully Human for more discussion). Man was the crown of God’s creation and above all the world of created beings. Satan would and does attack the closest thing to God and to God’s heart: man. One of the most effective ways to injure a man is not to attack him, rather to attack his family.

How?

Several of the demonic tactics in luring humans away from God is to seed doubt in our minds, especially in times of sorrow or stress. This accounts for the seeing of loved ones or even animals shortly after their death. Humans seek stability through reasoning and answers. We do not like change and pain. We prefer pleasure and simplicity. Demons appear as our loved ones in an attempt to question what we know and lead us away from God. Many times God is silent to the passing of our loved ones. He has His reasons, even if we don’t agree with them. We long to see them again. If demonic activity allows for our greatest longing during our greatest pain, to see our loved ones again, then we tend to relieve the pain through acceptance.

Summary

The Bible clearly states concerning Christians for us to be separate from the body is to be present with the Lord. Though some religions mention the body lingering for up to three days before departing, the Bible does not teach this . There is no mention of people hanging around or visiting loved ones once departing this life. Rather, there is a void that exists. Then something else is impersonating our loved ones. Satan and evil forces exist and will do most anything to keep you from the one true Holy Ghost. This Ghost or Spirit is not to be feared, but loved since He is the Spirit of Love. So now, who ya gonna call?