Roy Herndon Smith

The priest proclaimed, in stentorian voice,
in the inner sanctum of the temple,
“You pure and holy men of faith,
prepare the bread for the King’s banquet.
Do not allow a touch of leaven,
that pus of death, to corrupt it.
And when it’s ready, don’t let a crumb of it
fall into the jaws
of the filthy faithless dogs.”

Outside, in the market,
the carpenter quipped,
“But you all know heaven’s the bread
your mother makes;
she takes a splash of leaven
and stirs it into an ocean of flour
and leaves it to rot until it’s all
thick and sticky and bubbly and sour;
she kneads it and rounds it
into loaves as smooth and soft
as a baby’s bottom;
she pops them in the oven
to bake until the air fills
with the scent of Eden.”

To which, the faithless foreign bitch,
lolling beside him, added,
“Don’t forget, heaven’s the pups
under the table
feasting on the chunks
the children drop.”