I stood up and went to my wife and daughter and asked,
Did anyone ever read my poem,
Pairing Socks in the Morning Light?
It’s about a doctor of philosophy whose
carefully-cultivated skills of discernment
are unmasked in domestic tasks
To which the master spoke:
When the disciple sees no difference in the sorting,
then others will see no difference in the wearing.
This is as with the pan with encrusted food.
If it doesn’t come off in the dishwasher,
it won’t come off in the meal.
Chastened, I returned to my task,
where light alit
as a bird in my nest.
I have so long wondered about
the grief one nurses, wanting
to run to ask you
what I can do
but not asking you,
receding in fear instead