Around the Table
Last Sunday we gathered around several picnic tables for our monthly Wild Dinner Picnic. Protected from the rain under the picnic shelter we checked in and caught up. I love our shared meals together. I missed them so much when we were on Zoom. A shared meal around a table is the center of life and spirituality for me. I shared this poem that speaks of that centrality.
PERHAPS THE WORLD ENDS HERE BY JOY HARJO The world begins at a kitchen table. No Matter what, we must eat to live. The gifts of earth are brought and prepared, set on the table. So it has been since creation, and it will go on. …It is here that children are given instructions on what it means to be human. We make men at it, we make women. At this table we gossip, recall enemies and the ghosts of lovers. Our dreams drink coffee with us as they put their arms around our children. They laugh with us at our poor falling-down selves and as we put ourselves back together once again at the table. This table has been a house in the rain, an umbrella in the sun. We have given birth on this table, and have prepared our parents for burial here. At this table we sing with joy, with sorrow. We pray of suffering and remorse. We give thanks. Perhaps the world will end at the kitchen table, while we are laughing and crying, eating of the last sweet bite.
Shared meals are such a part of how I live my spirituality. I joked when I brought out the cake I baked, that it was theologically impossible not to bring food to share. We know many jokes are rooted in truth and I think that my faith and spirituality are so connected to a shared meal around a table that I really cannot gather together and not bring food to share. In case you couldn't join us, or maybe you just need more cake in your life, here is the New York Times recipe for plum cake.