You won’t forget this one:
Forgiveness Flour by Marguerite Stewart
When I went to the door, at the whisper of knocking,
I saw Simeon Gantner’s daughter, Kathleen, standing
There, in her shawl and her shame, sent to ask
“Forgiveness Flour” for her bread. “Forgiveness Flour,”
We call it in our corner. If one has erred, one
Is sent to ask for flour of his neighbors. If they loan it
To him, that means he can stay, but if they refuse, he had
Best take himself off. I looked at Kathleen . . .
What a jewel of a daughter, though not much like her
Father, more’s the pity. “I’ll give you flour,” I said,
and went to measure it. Measuring was the rub.
If I gave too much, neighbors would think I made sin easy,
but if I gave too little, they would label me “close.”
While I stood measuring, Joel, my husband
came in from the mill, a great bag of flour on his
shoulder, and seeing her there, shrinking in the
doorway, he tossed the bag at her feet. “Here, take
all of it.” And so she had flour for many loaves,
while I stood measuring.