Bread Ode

The dough rises whether we punch it or not.
The yeast is meant for scent.

The salt came first.
The wheat is loving the oven.

The body craves its various breads
as it craves stars in summer
or snow in December.

The smells of bread are a beatitude.
The crusts of bread are undulant land.

Even the baker dreams of kneading
and needing, of smelling and

tasting and salting,
of rising under an awning of rain.

Laurie Kutchins is the author of Slope of the Child Everlasting and The Night Path. Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, and The Georgia Review. She lives in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia.