Shin Yu Pai

the gift 

in another land
I ask permission to take from the fig tree 

my guide says
the Bhutanese believe plucking a leaf 

is akin to cutting the throats of one thousand monks 

here, he says let me do that for you,

how is this one


the uncarved block 

the thing we think

we want, perfection 

to honor a fidelity

to origin when all 

was ever in a state

of emerging 

the soft bones forming

a newborn’s skull 

the fontanelle of the David’s 

marble crown left undone 

imperfection a wholeness 

complete in and of itself