Bend for the mixing bowl
patterned like our mothers’.
Fetch the wooden spoon
darkened by a thousand dhals.
Slide bees-work into water, add yeast
and watch a muddy puddle
spring to life. Keep warm.
Wait. Wash hands, splash face, brush teeth.
Add fragrant flour
gifted by the summer sun
and salt from the earth and sea.
Beat, beat, beat the batter
Til your arm says ‘no more’.
First rising. Slow movement, stretch, balance.
Push, fold, push, fold.
until the dough submits.
Place a damp towel on its swelling crown.
Second rising. Up the hill through autumn leaves and mist.
Oil tins, light oven
form a trinity of loaves
smooth, round and sensuous
Third rising. Let thoughts arise.
Put the pieces in the kiln.
Set the timer, let the fire do its work.
Meditate, dog curled tired at your feet.
When the loaves sound like drums,
and smell of heaven,
turn out on a rack.