Nourishing Endurance

Of course, we didn’t know this was the last
meal we would ever share.
We sat in a circle on grass mats
that still smelled of open fields,
passing around wooden bowls of olives,
pistachios, bean stew, a basket of
fragrant bread, some dried figs.

We were held in the simple joy
of being together and with our teacher.
Joy surrounded us like a golden light.
We ate slowly, amid earnest talk,
until we were quite satisfied.

When our teacher held up another circle
of bread, we didn’t understand
what it was for. He passed the bread
around for each to break off a bit.
As we listened, we learned that this bread
was meant to feed our spirits,
to affirm our unity with each other.

We were not surprised when he raised
a blessing cup, as this was our custom.
Again, he celebrated our spiritual feast
of oneness through his teachings,
oneness in the Divine with all beings.

We know now he gave us this meal
to nourish our endurance,
to practice being with our teacher always,
being at one with the Divine always,
wherever we are and whoever we’re with.


Tina Datsko de Sánchez serves as Poet in Residence at the First Congregational Church of Long Beach.  She is the author of the bilingual poetry book The Delirium of Simón Bolívar.   Her four-book series of interfaith spiritual poetry inspired by Rumi and Hafiz is forthcoming from The Pilgrim Press.  The first volume is currently available for pre-order at:

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