I am learning to sculpt soap stone from a master
my first attempts are from his cut offs
small twisted bits resembling cashews
each one fitting inside the palm.
Where the saw blade severed them from the whole
that flat is now vertical
seven heads standing in a row
small twisted mouths singing their hearts out
cashews don't sing
but they are compulsively delicious
and sculpting is quite compulsive
even more than cutting one's nails
filing the rough edges and a nose appears
or a forehead bevelled on the cusp
fingertips feel the smooth countenance appear
holding three dimensions in the hand.