The Bowl Filling

I didn’t follow the holy man around

I never sat down to a meal with him

Loving him began this way: water

poured into emptiness

the bowl filling

Until I lifted the rim to my lips, drank

drank until action passed

into consequence, until the story was taken up

by those who think memory belongs

to the past, not to the future

We each had our parts—he

and I and the water—

and then the others, the ones

of dry hands and kisses

the ones on whom the plot depended


ANNE CARROLL FOWLER is an Episcopal priest and rector of St. John’s Church in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts.

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