March 4, 2021

“He humbled you and let you be hungry” -Deuteronomy 8:3

I’ve never really gone hungry,
but I’m hungry every day
for another bite, taste,
a scrap of the sweetness
given up during Lent.

Standing before the unattended
sheet of brownies,
I give up my slight fast easily,
hungering and thirsting
after flour and sugar,
discipline bowing before a
crumb of cake.

I join a generation of grumblers
never content with daily bread,
leaving a trail of bodies
scattered in the wilderness.

He who shouldered the weight
of the world wore as weak a frame
as the idolaters but never deigned
to mark for a meal even the smallest
pebble of disobedience.

I have failed at my fast,
but is anyone really surprised?
I was never expected to down
the cup of splintered wood and nails
or preserve my inheritance
whole in the face of steaming stew
or suppress the promptings
of my inner tempter,
let alone that of a satanic serpent.

Man shall not live by bread alone,
but I must have my bread:
small, thin, brittle,
blessed, and broken for me.

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