We want it all: potatoes pulled up
from under their poison foliage,
the artichoke’s heart, scraped clean,
the tender bodies of crustaceans, broken
from their calcified shells, saffron stamens,
plucked from the crocus’s center. Bark
of cinnamon trees, slow sugar tapped
from the maple. The golden vomit of bees,
pried from its waxen vaults. Even,
for some, the delicate crunch of crickets,
or hind legs of lamb, still tinged with blood.
The world is such an unexpected feast.
I think of my friend, Christopher,
who, when he found himself dying,
early one spring, kept telling us
how this was the best part—
the letting go. As if, in his hunger,
he’d somehow broken into death’s core,
torn off the husk, the brittle shell,
found, inside, the succulent heart,
and savored it.