The writer watches the woodworker
Who shapes and molds inert wood to his whim
Carves and curls, the thin wood peeling
In almost translucent strips.
How did this gene skip him?
He wonders, this weird skill to look through wood and see
Life within it, shapes concealed,
And then revealed,
The wood made flesh …
The woodworker keeps peeling
The shape unseen becomes seen.
He stops to sand it gently,
A lover’s hand on naked wood,
Switches to a knife,
Carves and cuts more carefully,
The wood falling now in slivers, not slips,
at his feet.
Finally, he hands it to you,
This wooden miracle,
A thing that did not exist before
Except as a block, a stick, a fallen limb
Picked from the forest floor and dead as Druids.
And you, in turn, hand your paper to him,
Also wood, at some point,
Where you have been scratching as he’s been carving.
He reads it, then turns to you and says—
“How in the fuck did you do that?”