Loved then, Loved Now: Half a Loaf

Half a Loaf

The whole loaf’s loft
is halved in profile,
like the standing side
of a bombed cathedral.

The cut face
of half a loaf
puckers a little.

The bread cells
are open and brittle
like touching coral.

It is nothing like the middle
of an uncut loaf,
nothing like a conceptual half
which stays moist.

I say do not adjust to half 
unless you must.

Kay Ryan’s Half a Loaf from p. 58, The Best of It: New and Selected, 2010)

The image of a bread as a cathedral, of bubbles as bombing, the exhortation to not settle for a disaster but a wholeness, I keep coming back to.