This Is the Time of Loaves and Fish

by Ariana D. Den Bleyker

People are hungry & one good word is bread
for a thousand against the 5,000 swallowing
remnants of a miracle into hungry bellies called out
into hope, for silence cannot nourish the body
because we are hungry & thirsty & come
to the table to leaven our lives,
to discover, to trust when it doesn’t make sense.

Lord, I believe, help my unbelief.

Let’s put all our chips into the middle of the table, 
expose the lack in our hands. The world is hungry;
feed a sea of people with small loaves & fish—
whatever is in your hand. Your tent is light 
enough to spring up around you yet heavy enough
to darken the stars & this world is a gift,
these bodies the same, but life incomplete—

They must be hungry.

Emmanuel, God with us, you hunger too—
feed us Your very self—& we’ll take what we need 
& pass it on, the miracle in the sharing,
manna from Heaven, provision for the hungry 
receiving Eucharist directly from the hands of Christ,
a boy’s small lunch broken & shared as the bounty 
of Heaven moved not only by beauty
of holiness but also by the holiness of beauty.

Ariana D. Den Bleyker is a Pittsburgh native currently residing in New York’s Hudson Valley where she is a wife and mother of two. When she’s not writing, she’s spending time with her family and every once in a while sleeps. She is the author of three collections and twenty chapbooks, among others. She is the founder and publisher of ELJ Editions, Ltd., a 501(c)3 literary nonprofit. She hopes you’ll fall in love with her words.

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