Ritual

by Lori Hershberger

Each morning breaks the same,
Rising with a hunger that carves
Like the slanting fingers of sunlight cutting
Through the fog that shrouds the neighbor’s burnt field.
Through the night, the fog settled deep in the valley
Bleeding dew on the fire-scorched ground;
I reach for coffee, two spoonfuls in the filter
Watch while the black liquid drips into the waiting cup;
The scalding brew stirs the restless throb
I trace the words that tremble on the page and pen the ache–
Read this my Lord—this hunger, this hollowness,
This burnt ground, this empty cup, my song to You.


Lori Hershberger is an absent-minded EFL teacher in the hills of Mae Hong Son province, Thailand, where she lives with her cat and wishes she had nine lives too.


Photography by Kenneth Godoy

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