Sunday Brunch: Pound Cake

This is the first in a series of posts entitled Sunday Brunch: Feasting on the Good Things in Life, However Small.  

First Sunday of Lent: Pound Cake

Everyone’s eyes are on the man; it’s hard not to notice the lopsided clack and thump of his step as he drags a cane past his brown leather shoes. A young couple tithes their time and promises to save his seat while he gets a coffee from the counter.

Next thing I notice, he’s sitting down in a kind of calculated fall, jacket on the back of the chair, cane leaned on the wall. He has a lidless cup of coffee and a slice of yellow pound cake with a real fork on a real plate.

He pulls a new paperback book out of a shopping bag.  He opens the book and it hangs in his hand, lopsided, the cover and first pages fighting to balance out the story to come, quite the opposite of the man whose hands it is in, the man whose story is in the last chapters, the man who comes from a time when people moved slowly enough to eat things off of real plates, when a lid wasn’t needed for your coffee because you weren’t going anywhere.

And though this man looks content as a honeydew, popping fluffy yellow forkfuls of cake into his mouth and turning the pages of his fresh book, I feel an immense tenderness watching him. I want to turn the coffee shop into a campfire, surround his table with the chairs of the busy young people with the paper cups and the grease stains on our napkins, I want him to put his hands on his knees and tap his feet and tell us his stories, the back pages of his book, our eyes agape as we follow his words, wise and long as the hairs combed across his head.

Jane Sloan


B. Jane Sloan is a writer and high school theology teacher from Atlanta, GA. In addition to blogging for Catholic Exchange, she has been published in Our Sunday Visitor, Notre Dame Magazine and the literary journal Omnibus. Jane graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2007 with a B.A. in theology and philosophy. In 2009, she graduated with an M. Ed. from Notre Dame's Alliance for Catholic Education. In 2009 Jane made a 500-mile pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela in Spain. She spent summer 2010 as an intern planting vegetables and baking bread at the Abbey of Regina Laudis OSB in Bethlehem, CT. In 2011 she was present among the millions at the beatification of Blessed John Paul II. She is currently working toward her M.A. in Theology. Follow her on Twitter @CE_SundayBrunch. Follow her other blog on all-natural eating at

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