All modesty is false modesty
when it comes to poems,
              or to the silence
in which poems begin
              before they are words,
when they are still daisies
              at the foot of the dead Christ
in an anonymous painting,
              13th century. Not to know how to live
is one thing, and nothing
              to be ashamed of.
But not to know
              how to sit in front of those daisies
with tears in my eyes:
              what a waste that would be.

Copyright © 2017 Jim Moore. Used with permission of the author. This poem originally appeared in Kenyon Review, November/December 2017