Monday, 28 April 2008


Some labour gathers to itself a light:
This I have found where, women, making bread,
Perform anew an ancient, simple rite
That men and little children may be fed.
Something about the handling of white flour
Is beautiful: the thought of sun on wheat -
The shining silver of a quick, late shower -
A great mill glimmering through the harvest heat -

And old as time- a fadeless picture still:
The gold of grain crushed fine beneath a stone -
Two women grinding at an ancient mill,
And one is taken - one is left alone -
Oh, always, somewhere - women have made bread
That men and little children might be fed.

Grace Noll Crowell


Anonymous said...

I'd not heard of Grace Noll Crowell before.

This is a lovely poem.

The Cottage Nester said...

Sweet poem and the picture went so well with the words.

Abbie in Kentucky USA said...

That is a lovely poem! I wonder if you could tell me what you think these lines mean?:
Two women grinding at an ancient mill,
And one is taken - one is left alone -

My sister was a champion bread baker! She made bread without a recipe, just by feel, and she even ground her own flour! She died of cancer complications in October 2010, and I miss her so much. I think she would have loved this poem (although the part about making bread just for men and children might have rubbed her feminist ideals the wrong way, at least until she really thought about the meaning of the poem!)

Maybe I've answered my own question, since she was definitely taken, and I am left behind. But I'd love to hear your interpretation if you have time and inclination to reply...

Abbie in Kentucky USA