Batter My Heart: A Boy Asks For Breakfast

It appears, dear readers, that breakfast is on my mind. I have just written a version of John Donne's Batter My Heart, Three Person'd God that is about loving breakfast. And wanting breakfast. And not being able to wait for breakfast.

What better morning to post this than today, when we all stupidly spring forward together, after having all stupidly fallen back last autumn. You probably didn't have time to make yourself a decent breakfast today, since you lost an hour. Instead of crunching on bacon, please briefly enjoy this sad, joyful, crispy, and redolent cri de déjeuner.

But before that, two other joyful bits of breakfast.

I few days ago I wrote a breakfast limerick for one of my sons. He absolutely loved it, mostly because his big brother, who is in charge of making breakfast, makes a lot of oatmeal. I here share that limerick with you.

There once was a boy named George
Who every morning ate porridge.
One day he rebelled
And loudly he yelled:
"Bring meat, not grasses and forage!"

The second thing I want to show you before I bring in the big stack of pancakes that is my Batter My Heart is this happy little quote:

At last, we are here. Enjoy.

Batter My Heart: A Son Asks For Breakfast

Batter this griddle, thrice-blesséd mom; for, you
As yet but beat, sift, stir, mix the leaven,
That it may rise, stand, puff nicely to heaven;
So cook, and if it burn make it new.
I, like besieged town, without my vittles,
Labour to patience, but Oh, to no use.
Ham, and biscuit, coffee, orange juice,
Make me crave sorely; so dear woman, please griddle!
Dearly I love you, and would love to wait,
Yet am undone by the aroma of bacon.
So pour that batter, flip them on to the plate.
Soon brothers and sisters come smell what you're making.
I beg you to stack them in piles least three,
For never will I be fed unless you feed me.


  1. Muchogusto. El tema de impregnacion/fecundacion estan aqui tambien, pero en el estomago del nino. :)

  2. Hm. I can't tell if this is awkward because the ideas are awkward or the Spanish is awkward.

  3. You’re a literary man, aren’t you?

    The themes of divine fecundity and impregnation and, in the particular poem you are imitating, something near sexual violence are common in Donne’s poetry. He’s almost asking God to rape him so that he can attain sanctity.

    This translates vaguely into your poem: the boy is hungry, but he cannot feed himself. He needs an external hand to deliver him from his particular plight. He begs and begs to have this need fulfilled. Of course, he desires feeding, and would eat given the chance (Donne’s situation is somewhat different – “Batter my heart”).

    However, there is a purpose: rather than the fecundity of sanctity, the fecundity of life itself is praised in this glorious scene of a boy enraptured by “bacon”, “eggs”, and the elusive pancakes. A little boy will be stuffed full of yumminess for growth, strength, physical health.

    Y como lo piensas?

    1. I'm with you, homie. I was just trying to point out that following the word "impregnation" with "in the stomach of the little boy" was probably a little awkward.

    2. Well ... you knoowwww ... analogy exists because of difference ... :)

  4. As for the Spanish ... lo siento ;)


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