There is an unseen sweetness
in the stomach’s emptiness.
We are lutes.
When the soundbox is filled,
no music can come forth.
When the brain and the belly
are burning from fasting,
every moment a new song rises
out of the fire.
The mists clear,
and a new vitality makes you
spring up the steps before you.
Be empty and cry as a reed instrument.
Be empty and write secrets with a reed pen.
When satiated by food and drink,
an unsightly metal statue
is seated where your spirit should be.
When fasting, good habits gather like
Fasting is Solomon’s ring.
Don’t give in to illusion
and lose your power.
But even when all will and control
have been lost,
they will return when you fast,
like soldiers appearing out of the ground,
or pennants flying in the breeze.
A table descends to your tents,
the Lord’s table.
Anticipate seeing it when fasting,
this table spread with a different food,
far better than the broth of cabbages.