Monday, February 7, 2011

the science of bakING

i bought a bread machine last month,

i measured and poured each simple ingredient
and flipped a switch to "on" and went about my day.

it whirred and it hummed, and it tapped
metallic, like some alien craft on the kitchen counter

the bread came out in soft, square, blocks
warm on the tongue
and was eaten up with butter and jam and so much soup
all just the same.

but my hands

missed the feel of oil and flour and cracked wheat
sticking to my skin and under my fingernails

and the strength my arms felt
as they kneaded and kneaded to the rhythm of my own passionate breath

pausing only to brush my hair back from my brow with my wrist
leaving primitive streaks of flour across my human cheek

like a journey, a pilgrimage
to Mecca, or the holy land
or Damascus

measuring the oil as careful as Elijah's widow

choosing a place, a warm, dry womb
to watch the dough, the yeast, the flour, rise like some miraculous, living, testimony
to the way things are and have been for centuries.

Image credit:


  1. This is beautiful!!! I'm going to link to it soon . . .

  2. thanks jess! i'd be honored! :)

  3. this is lovely, ali!
    homemade bread is the absolute best.