This morning at breakfast I had nine grapes.
Because I tasted each one
And enjoyed each one and
For the first time felt
the resistance of each one as
I pulled each from its stem
For the first time saw
Where the grape meets the stem
The little tufts
Through which the grape became the grape
Through which the nutrients, the flavor, the sweetness
Flowed into it and
Now into me
Small, never before seen by me, unnamed, unfamous
And then the bread
Dense with grains,
Good-for-you dense and dry in the mouth.
Cranberries on the underside
Hidden from my view.
My goodness, what a surprise.
I can hardly contain myself with the glory of this moment.
Tears well up.
I don’t know why.
Great anticipation to get back to my room to write this down
And still the great challenge not to anticipate.
Moments between now and then
Wash my dishes fully present,
Climb the steps,
Bow to the monk passing by,
Walk through the garden, each plant,
Pass the pond where the fish are quiet
Enjoying the cool water before the sun shines.
Tom Heller, Awakened Virtues of the Heart, is moving from Seattle to Cambodia, where he and his wife hope to start a Sangha.