Sunday, May 1, 2011

Sabbath Dawn

I remember
There was a short sermon
On a small hill
In a little country

I believe the fishes were quite real
The soup was not thin
And the bread went a long way

I believe the skeptical women made the fine soup
After the wisest old woman gave a memorable blessing

And the men showed reluctant appreciation
Watching over the children
With few complaints
After the wisest old man
Reminded them of their own boyhood
And their love for mother who they couldn’t confuse
Their respect for father who they couldn’t trick

We listened to her without fear
She was one of us
We spoke to him without shaking
He did not judge us
We found words for our confusion
She did not shame us
We knew the value of our simple lives
Sitting with the elders

We sat then
With our own children
Quietly eating fish and broth and bread
Feeling equal to the hope of the children
We remembered how we had netted a few fish in the morning
We remembered pounding out a few flat loaves

We sat there
Husbands and wives
As the drummers matched heartbeats
As the smallest feet began slapping the powdery dust
As the elders
Got to their feet and in one long movement

To the fish and the soup and the bread and the goats and the wheat and the wine
All round and around the well until
They had given thanks to the sunset the sunrise the constant star and the southern stars
And then when all of this was accomplished
The elders were tired
We guided them home at Sabbath dawn

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