Agni in Sanskrit
means digestive fire,
she said as she spoke
of things we are unable
to digest.
Not just food, but experience
and emotion.
Ah… said the clenched fist
I felt in my abdomen.

That night I vomited again,
what I was not able to
process any other way,
the bile burning my throat
so that it has been sore since.

Ayurveda recommends ginger
with lemon and honey,
similar to the honey
with apple cider vinegar
I’ve been taking.
All seven flavors at every meal
and foods to suit your body type.

If my diagnosis is correct
I need to give up avocado
and jicama.
I need an anger that burns fast,
instead of one that smolders in
my belly.

In the kitchen she pointed
to the tray, an altar of sorts
honoring the five elements.
“Eating is our most
intimate relationship
with nature,” she said.

I had never known
to see it this way,
though I bless my food
each meal,
a litany of ingredients.
I had not thought to see dining
as the consummation of my love
for the Earth.