Tuesday, February 21, 2006

"The Baker/Bread & Fish", version four

Bread and Fish

In air, silver and sudden, but its weight lasts,
fish vanished into water. The word?
A word’s like that, flashing against what force
always pushes forward, its hurry its pace

to everywhere, carrying everything one way,
even mountains. A word’s weight’s its sense,
yes, but mostly weightless, all air and water
and wriggle. At the broad foot of the hill

they bunched up, your listeners, those
seeing others gathered came too, gathering
for what you were giving, a story or stories.
What you said got to them, moved, invisible,

the light bending as in water, bending around
the object. The bread on your truck was warm still
from the morning baking, then words weren’t all
that filled the air. Their faces caught the ordinary light

not like stones in the waterfall’s pool,
shimmering and jeweled. So what? Ripples
hide them anyway. When you finally served
and the people spread out, a line that grew

longer as they talked among themselves, you
got your first unselfconscious smiles from
mouths chewing. “I know,” one man said,
“I don’t know much. But this is good. This bread.”

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