The Feast Before the Fast

by Katie Harmon-McLaughlin

This day is for joy.
It is for delight.
It is for savoring.
It is for saying–
What tastes and feels good
Can also be holy.

This feast day is sacrament.
It is open table, more than enough.
It is anticipation, preparation
For the restraint that lies ahead.

It is for breathing deep
And making ready.
It is the final bite for now,
The last sweet indulgence.
It is the sacred willingness
To give up the things
We think we love
To discover more fully
The One we love.

This day is the edge
Of the desert place.
We enter by choice,
Led by the Spirit.
But that comes tomorrow.

This is the day for gazing,
With full hearts and stomachs,
At the distance we will walk
Before we feast again,
Grateful for this abundant life
And the journey that leads
Through emptiness
To even deeper abundance.