numinousmagazine

Liz Afton

In Issue 4 on October 31, 2009 at 7:40 am

Give Us This Day

To celebrate the hearth, its funny hot igloo
swelled as a mother tummy, her still-
warm french awaiting paper swaddles.

To praise punk baker angels wafting yeast
& fire, to be blessed by white prints,
to worship: O sun-filled honey, O molten light.

To dip into tall gems, jars that glint,
to dribble flower syrup, sticky bee goo,
that sweetness I can’t fully swallow.

To see the bees patiently feeding
wax boxes in their wheezing hive
out under the bakery sign that reads:

THE HUNGRY GHOST.

To know her kind: communion holy,
austere as Buddhist dhamma,
more frightening than a campfire story.

To summon her, to watch her rise,
swift as dough, pale as a cloud of flour,
moving her mouth so desperately

to fill only with more air. To witness
her witchcraft unsating my plate,
to know utensils can’t help her,

that no careful cooking can get her fed.
To hold her gaze, to meditate, to pray,
to turn away at last with lovingkindess,

to walk in peace with my bag of bread.

Liz Afton is an MSW student at Hunter College School of Social Work. She received her BA from Smith College, where she was one of two poets selected to represent at the Five College Student Poetryfest. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Brink, r.kv.r.y,, and Shampoo. A native New Yorker, she lives in Brooklyn with two kittens.

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