The Growing of the Grain

The Wind

Who is it helps the grain to grow?

"We do," said the winds that blow.

"We stir the brown and ancient earth

In which the good grain has its birth;

We grind the mighty rocks to sand

And scatter them across the land;

We rouse the lazy clouds that lie

Within the pastures of the sky

And drive them over fields of grain

That need the gentle touch of rain."

Who is it helps the grain to grow?

"We do," said the winds that blow.

 

The Snow

Who is helps the grain to grow?

"We do," said the ice and snow.

"We cover up the frozen ground

With fleet blankets tucked around

The little seeds with drowsy eyes

Who dream of May and summer skies;

The little seeds of grain who keep

The thought of April in their sleep.

We wrap them safe and snug and warm,

Protected from the winter storm."

Who is it helps the grain to grow?

"We do," said the ice and snow.

 

The Rain

Who helps to grow the springing grain?

"I do," said the gentle rain.

"I bring the little waking seeds

Water for their growing needs;

I give the white and hidden roots

Water for their bodies' fruits;

And when the sun in hot July

Burns across the meadows dry,

I bring the blessed cool reprieves

Of water for the thirsty leaves."

Who helps to grow the springing grain?

"I do," said the gentle rain.

 

The Sun

Who is it quickens growth begun?

"I do," said the golden sun.

"I fill the leaves with sunlight power,

Fill the roots and fill the flower,

Fill the seeds and fill the stem,

And that is how I quicken them.

In all the world the plants alone

Can make my energy their own

And with it build the living food

To feed the growing multitude."

Who is it quickens growth begun?

"I do," said the golden sun.

 

The Air

Who is it helps the sun and rain

Grow the lovely springing grain?

"I do," said the air tight curled

About the roundness of the world.

"All the green leaves everywhere

Take the gift I have to share.

Part they use for growth and flower

With the help of sun and shower.

Part they give me back again

For breath of animals and men.

And so I help the sun and rain

Grow the lovely springing grain."

 

The Earth

Who helps to grow the springing grain?

"I," said the earth on hill and plan.

"When the roots come poking down

Through my larder cool and brown,

Little roots from bursting seed,

They will find the food they need,

Food to grow a stem and leaves,

Food to swell the yellow sheaves,

Food to fill the shining pot

With a porridge piping hot."

Who helps to grow the springing grain?

"I," said the earth on hill and plain.

 

Kind and friendly things are these;

The sun that shines on land and seas,

The old brown earth, the springing grain,

The green and searching April rain,

The softly falling winter snow,

The little winds that sing and blow.

 

-Excerpted from Grain Through The Ages

Initiation

What does it mean?

I don't think about it much. Maybe not as much as I ought to,  thought to keyboard to screen to reader. When I started my bakery, I thought my every motion would be filled with intention and fueled by philosophy, and that I would somehow be immune to an exhaustion I carried with me from my history and continued to build upon. And that was the point. Pain - blood, sweat, tears, and every less visible sign of a battle, struggle, or punishment. It was pain that has been my light; to illuminate the unknown. Like the bumpers on a bowling lane to guide me further along to something I might have only imagined when I began.

I was hoping to answer something about myself, the question, I don't really know.

Pain is also bread, literally. It is simultaneously humble and majestic, and at times divine. We use bread to initiate a meal, to objectively assert a spirit of service, we use it to stretch more precious foods, and as a component of a wise resort to feed many on what is essentially leftovers. It's called the staff of life, it's an afterthought, it's avoided, it's the subject of infinite musings. It's not mine, it's not yours, it is distinctly of the earth, and of the realm of alchemy, and of magic, and is also distinctly human, something that could never be found in nature of nature's volition. It is the clear product of intention, and of mishap and accident. I would know.

And it means something to you that I could at best only begin to comprehend. I know that much.

It is proof of feeling. It is the sign that I am here, in whatever sense that could mean.

It's love. And it's enduring.

It's the search for bliss. It's the care I want for me. It's what I give to you.

 

Davey