I gathered the grains
of my past days
and baked a loaf of bread
with my own hands.
A loaf of bitter bread,
grey flour mixed with chaff,
lay on the palm of my hand,
pitted and charred.
I offered this loaf to the gods,
but they didn't want to eat
and turned their delicate noses
to the cloud-smeared chrysolite.
I offered this loaf to my father,
but he'd been in the ground too long,
his hands shot up like fir-trees,
a thick root slid through his tongue.
I offered this loaf to my dog,
but he only barked at it
and dropped it at my threshold,
all bitten and stained with dirt.
I tried to eat myself
the loaf of my past days,
but I didn’t have
enough hunger and teeth.
So I gave it to my soul
clothed in unfading array
like a wind-wound exquisite doll
made of future and clay.
She nodded and nodded her head,
and her earrings jingled so
gently as, chewing the bread,
she dropped crumbs on the floor.
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