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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Cooking or Baking (01/04/07)

TITLE: My daily bread
By Lesley-Anne Evans
01/08/07


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I donned my apron,
floured the pan,
wiped flour from my nose,
and in the pan I placed the dough,
then left it while it rose.

Soon yeast and warmth and time took hold
and swelled the dough times two,
it’s perfect plumpness telling me
that baking time was due.

The oven beeped it’s readiness
the temp. was right on track,
and so I placed my lovely bread
upon the middle rack.

The bread rose higher
and higher still,
it’s aroma filled the air.
I dreamed of spreading fresh preserves
on thick warm bread, with care.

I dreamed, my hunger deepened
I planned great feasts in my head.
And all the while my hungry heart
cried out for more than bread.

Then suddenly I smelled a smell
and realised with a shock,
that in my rush to bake my bread
I forgot to set the clock!

The oven door I opened
and there to my dismay
instead of bounty in my pan
was blackness and decay.

I looked again
and shook my head
perplexed and in distress
for now I knew beyond a doubt
that I couldn’t eat this mess.

“Thou shalt not live by bread alone”
came unbidden to my mind.
And I thanked the Lord for
burnt offerings
of bread and other kinds.

And then I sat and ate the Word,
and chewed on it awhile.
Digested and internalised
this bread did satisfy.


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Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 01/11/07
A wonderful lesson, told with great poetic flair and avoiding preachiness.

Be careful of "it's"--which means "it is." I think you wanted "its" without the apostrophe, a couple of times.

I appreciate the humbleness and self-deprecating humor here--very satisfying.
Jen Davis01/17/07
An enjoyable read. I especially liked this stanza: “I dreamed, my hunger deepened
I planned great feasts in my head. And all the while my hungry heart
cried out for more than bread.” The final stanza also came to a “satisfying” conclusion.

One little suggestion: internalized should be spelled with a “z.”
David (The Goliath Assassin)12/15/07
Your poem is cute and smart at the same time... so hard for me to do... the flow is great, the moral stands, the timing of it is just right. The spacing could use some work, however.

Many of your stanzas are four lines long. This tends to imply standard 4/4 time. But when you have a stanza with five lines, it confuses the reader's perception of rhythm. I understand that you might want to keep shorter lines for vertical uniformity... but I feel obliged to mention that horizontal uniformity is always more important. Mother Goose and Doctor Seuss would put their carreers on it.

I've re-aranged some of your stanzas to reflect horizontal uniformity, with four lines each. Sure, some lines look long, but the whole poem would seem more uniform if all stanzas had four lines.

"I donned my apron, floured the pan,
wiped flour from my nose,
and in the pan I placed the dough,
then left it while it rose."

"The bread rose higher and higher still,
it’s aroma filled the air.
I dreamed of spreading fresh preserves
on thick warm bread, with care."

"I looked again and shook my head
perplexed and in distress
for now I knew beyond a doubt
I could not eat this mess."

As far as content, it's simply marvelous, and I couldn't suggest a thing! This was a very fun read, LA Evans. Thank you!
David (The Goliath Assassin)12/15/07
Geeze... I left one out:

“Thou shalt not live by bread alone”
came unbidden to my mind.
And I thanked the Lord for burnt offerings
of bread and other kinds.

Burnt offerings can be included in the line above.