Maundy Thursday: Reflections

Mabry Mill Upside Down “Mabry Mill Upside Down,” by S.G. Hunter

Old standbys—wheat and white.
The stuff of life.
We break it, eat it, think almost nothing of it.
Golden-crusted loaves seasoned by the smell of the earth
Passed from me to you to the stranger.
We cannot live without it—
The bread or the sharing.

Green grapes “Green Grapes,” by S.G. Hunter

Poetry bottled and decanted.
Kiss of sweet grace on thirsty lips.
Remembrance seasoned by the taste of the earth.
Spilled out between us,
For us,
You and me and the stranger.
We cannot live without it—
The sip of mystery or the sharing.

Passerby “Passerby” by S.G. Hunter

We bathe in it, fear it, plunge its murky depths.
Washing over weary feet,
Soaking chafed hands.
We cannot live without it—
The brooding Spirit,
Sea-lapped promises on sun-singed shores.

Bread. Wine. Water.
The earth.
Poured out.
Stirred up
In us.
Remembering that does not forget
Hungry, wilderness people
In neighborhoods, towns, cities.
Bread. Wine. Water.
Our hands
Baking, pouring, washing.
Gifts of God for the people of God.

“Never Sit with Your Back to the Door”

Sometimes we need a new perspective, a more expansive vision.

“Never sit with your back to the door.” This quote from Frank Herbert’s Dune tops Google searches about the famous novel. Perhaps that is because so many people prefer situational awareness. They want to know what is going on around them in the room.

I Googled this too. Google’s answer is not surprising. Most people who have the option choose to sit where they can observe a room’s main points of entry.

While visiting Yale Divinity School this week, I ate breakfast on the top floor of the Omni Hotel. The restaurant has spacious windows on three sides to take advantage of the 19th floor view of the city.

Sometimes we need a new perspective, a more expansive vision.

“Is this okay?” she asks
and places the menu on the table
by the seat facing the windows

I almost take the seat
on the other side.


But then I risk eating
maple smoked sausage
and blueberry scones with
my back to the door,
monitoring instead
the vital signs of the city,
heart jumping every time the
waiter appeared at my shoulder
to refill my coffee

while in the distance a
glistening brass weathervane
teeters and spins
atop a church steeple spire
seeking Spirit winds.