Explore the way
it rises from
            nothing, what
this teaches about
            dignity. On the table
of furrowed wood,
            knives coaxing butter
out of sleep.
            I wonder how
my father thinks,
            crumbs drying over
his mouth so he
            never requires more
than what I have grown
            used to confessing.
I trace the dough’s
            burnt handwriting
with my tongue.

                                                        Jerrold Yam