Sacred Exchange between St. Francis & Lady Poverty - 552 

astonished and said to herself: "Who has ever seen in past generations such things as these! Blessed are you, Lord God, Who cares for all things! Everything is possible when you wish. You have taught your people to please you through such deeds." They then sat down together, thanking God for all His gifts.

62Lady Poverty gave the order to bring the cooked food on dishes. Behold a single dish was brought filled with cold water for all of them to dip bread. There was neither an abundance of dishes nor a variety of cooked foods.

She asked that at least uncooked, aromatic herbs be brought to her. Since they did not have a gardener and knew nothing of a garden, however, they gathered wild herbs in the woods and placed them before her.

"Bring me a little salt," she said, "to season the herbs for they are bitter." "Wait, Lady," they responded. "We will go to town for some. If they are offered to us, we will bring them to you."

"Bring me a knife," she said, "and I will cut away what is superfluous and slice the bread which is hard and dry." "Lady, we don't have a blacksmith to make us swords. For now use your teeth in place of a knife. Afterwards, we will provide one."

"Is there a little wine among you?" "Our Lady, we have no wine," Jn 2:3 they responded. "At the beginning of human life there was only bread and water. Sir 29:28 It is not good for you to drink wine because Christ's spouse must avoid wine like poison."

63When they were satisfied more by the glory of such want than by an abundance of all things, they blessed the Lord in whose sight they found such grace and led her to a place where she would rest because she was tired. And so she laid down naked upon the naked earth.

She even asked for a pillow for her head. They immediately brought a stone and placed it under her head.

After enjoying a very quiet and healthy sleep, she quickly arose and asked to be shown the enclosure. Taking her to a certain hill, they showed her all the world they could see and said: "This, Lady, is our




Sacrum commercium sancti Francisci cum domina Paupertate, Fontes Franciscani, p.

vehementer admirata est dicens intra se: "Quis umquam vidit talia in generationibus seculorum? 12Benedictus tu, Domine Deus, cui cura est de omnibus; subest enim tibi posse, cum volueris; docuisti populum tuum per talia opera placere tibi." 13Sicque consederunt pariter gratias agentes Deo super omnia dona sua.

14Iussit domina Paupertas apportari cocta cibaria in scutellis. Et ecce allata est scutella una plena aqua frigida, ut intingerent omnes in ea panem: non erat ibi copia scutellarum nec coquorum pluralitas.

15Petiit aliquas saltem herbas odoriferas crudas sibi preberi. Sed hortulanum non habentes et hortum nescientes, collegerunt in silva herbas agrestes et posuerunt coram ea. 16Que ait: "Parum salis afferte ut saliam herbas, quoniam amare sunt." 17"Exspecta inquiunt domina, quousque civitatem intremus et afferamus tibi, si fuerit qui prebeat nobis."

18"Prebete inquit mihi cultellum ut emundem superflua et incidam panem, quia valde durus et siccus est." 19Dicunt ei: "Domina, non habemus fabrum ferrarium, qui nobis faciat gladios; nunc autem dentibus cultelli vice utere et postea providebimus."

20"Et vinum apud vos est aliquantulum?" dixit. 21Responderunt illi dicentes: "Domina nostra, vinum non habemus, quia initium vite hominis panis et aqua, et tibi bibere vinum non est bonum, quoniam sponsa Christi vinum debet fugere pro veneno."

22Postquam autem exsaturati sunt magis ex tante inopie gloria quam essent rerum omnium abundantia, benedixerunt Domino, in cuius conspectu tantam invenerunt gratiam, et duxerunt illam ad locum in quo quiesceret, quia fatigata erat. Sicque supra nudam humum nudam se proiecit.

23Petiit quoque pulvinar ad caput suum. At illi statim portaverunt lapidem et supposuerunt ei.

24Illa vero, quietissimo somno ac sobria dormiens, surrexit festinanter, petens sibi claustrum ostendi. 25Adducentes eam in quodam colle ostenderunt ei totum orbem quem respicere poterant, dicentes: "Hoc est claustrum nostrum, domina."

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 552