Fathom Mag

The Pandemic Kitchen Table

Published on:
January 27, 2022
Read time:
2 min.
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My world has been whittled down
to a few square feet.
I measure my days
by time spent in rooms.
I can count how many friends
I have seen in months
on two hands
and even this
is controversy.

This great Narrowing of Scope
leaves me often in my kitchen,
preparing and cleaning
and eating in between.
What myth have I believed
to think this limiting;
to see the globe we bought our son
all its distance and its scale,
to call this less than all the miles,
all the trails
I have yet to blaze.
Often the world is much more maze
than the line-corner-line
of the kitchen sink.

But after a good meal,
my hands submerged in warm water,
resetting the room to order
while my infant daughter
babbles on the floor:
this is my favorite place to think.

I love this about those words:
as I wash the dishes
I remember what it is to be washed.
As I eat the bread,
I remember the body that sustains.
As I drink the wine,
I remember blood.
This place is both room and bridge,
stuff and concept,
and metaphor.

The greatest mission is one of perspective,
so we dine and we converse
both to learn and to rehearse,
answer and question,
adventure and lesson.

We are not without a Guest here,
that Man who is both Meal and Mystery
is never far from where
the killed things feed,
the dead bring forth life. 

Either all of this
is nothing more than chemistry,
Pavlovian need, something trained,
robotic even,
or we are acting out a story,
epic in scope
though no travel necessary. 

Eat the bread.
Drink the wine.
Enjoy the world brought quietly
to your table –
live again a dinner
both Function and Fable,
a Supper,
Last and First.
End the hunger
in your soul,
the thirst
both Earth and Spirit know
with pre or probiotic, glycemic, unpoetic,
carloric, protein, carbohydrate,
fiber, thiamin, riboflavin, lipid,
bioavailable, epigenetic, gut biome,
vitamins and minerals
and be the Salt –
the only rock we eat –
the rocks cry out:
“We know so little of what we need
to survive.” 

Next time you feel in disarray,
unrooted in this room,
lost in your home:
set the Table,
survey the Molecular Mystery,
lay along the cutting board
your Life;
between Matter and Maker,
choose this day your Lord,
then take the knife:
find your way

Evan Dunn
Evan has been writing poetry for twenty years and performing it for ten. His little Seattle area family is growing with two small ones and another on the way. He works in the tech startup world but really loves delving into philosophical debate over coffee. Twitter @evanpdunn

Covetr image by Brooke Lark.

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