From the trusty crock you teach
how cold a winter’s morning
or how warm a summer’s day might be.
Oh not in thermometric numbers by degree
but by your suave substantial answer
to the knife tip’s touch,
by your complexion and your spreadability.
At your most noble, taken new
from finest milk and churned
to a consistency all of your own,
epitome of softness and a cache
of flavor—you’re unsalted, sweet,
delicately of the pasture: dandelion,
clover or alfalfa, onion grass…
I love yourself
by any means conveyed—
a raft of toast, a lobster tail,
an artichoke sauteed—even my cat
demands a tiny pat of you each day.
But best of all, piece de resistance,
those days when I bake bread
I break a hunk
warm, before the loaf is sliced,
and slather you all over it.
Then you are paradise.