My child says in her next life she should like
to be a potato, if a potato could make someone
happy— in other words, tuber grown in loamy
soil, starchy carbohydrate that converts to sugar
as soon as it’s eaten. And its green runners
streaking across the ground, every eye pinned
on its jacket a bud or a node— I thought of
the famous Flower Sermon, in which the Buddha
holds up a single lotus pulled up from the mud;
and of his apprentice Mahakasyapa who smiles
in understanding. The blue-green leaves are first
to unfurl on the surface of water in summer;
then, the fragrant double blossoms of deep pink.
Inside the matchstick curtain of stamens,
a seedpod the color of burnished yellow: shape
that marvelously resembles an expensive shower
fixture you could get from a hardware store— So
much form, simmering in brown and formless mud.
In response to Via Negativa: Replete.