ode to a loaf of bread

Flour, salt, water, leaven
4 simple ingredients
the DNA of a simple loaf of bread

Good flour, good salt,
sea salt of course,
mixed together, soft and white

Water, fresh from the spring,
water contained, life giving water
stirred with leaven
                                    growing, bubbling

Sticky dough poured out
folded, pushed down
with floured hands

        turn,     fold,      push,
                turn,      fold,     push,
                        turn,     fold,     push

until

a smooth ball is born
soft, floury, smooth

ball        cradled in a warm bowl

        growing
                               aging                    
                                                                    until

                pushed up                  and out

punch down,
                           pour
                                          out
gather into my hands
          turn,     fold,     push,    stretch

As I shape the loaf into a floury round,
it springs up in my hands
The leaven is breathing inside

A cross, cut into the top
breaks the surface making
4 deep grooves where butter flows like a river

Bread baked,
                  scent of flour, salt, and leaven
                                                             drift from the oven

Food of life
                                                        staff of life
who will eat my loaf
what table will it grace

Great Cathedral or humble street corner
Lord, or commoner
all eat a simple loaf

Communion, Lord’s Supper, Eucharist
wherever 2 or 3 are gathered
a simple loaf graces the table

A simple loaf
The staff of Life
Bread and Grace,
A simple loaf
Offered
Received
Eaten 

Ruth Jewell, ©July 13, 2020

Prayerful Tuesday, Paying It Forward, August 27, 2013

Remembrance
Remembrance

Prayer Practice of Paying It Forward

Paying it forward is described as the recipient of a good deed turning and doing a good for some else instead of rewarding the donor. It is based on the idea that if everyone shared what they had the world would be a better place. Today, this week, I would like you to practice the “Prayer of Paying It Forward.”

Examine your own lives and identifying when someone gave you something special, helped you out when you were in bad place, or lifted your spirits when you were depressed. Let the memory of what they did fill you again with the joy of a generous gift. Now as you go through your day and through this week you may meet someone who also is in need of a special helping hand, a word of praise, someone to listen to. Offer to them a moment of your time, a word or phrase to cheer, or gift of physical resources without expecting acknowledgement or repayment. If they ask just tell them to “help someone in the future when they need it.”

Today’s prayer:

A Celtic Prayer

‘Maintain the right of the lowly,
rescue the weak and the needy.’
Psalm 82

Let me be awake to life
In my soul and in my seeing
Let me be alive to the gift of grace
of each person I meet
Let me be fully alive
Let me be fully aware
Of earth, of sky, of sea,
Of every human family
of all creations glory
Let this day be my prayer to thee
Amen

Ruth Jewell, ©August 27, 2013