Click here to listen to Edison Jennings read this poem.
Though livid and salacious, supermarket Red Delicious
don’t deserve the name. But after bagging two or three,
I think of old-stock Staymans that grew behind our house
in weather-beaten, bee-infested rows no one ever pruned,
and all we had to do was reach. I must have eaten bushels’ worth
while balanced in the highest limbs. With one hand full of apples,
the other swatting bees, I watched swallows tip
and skim the tree-rimmed skies already hinting cold,
the windfall left ungathered, the fallow years that followed,
and now this bag of garish fruit my memory grafts to vintage
among the rows of grocery aisles that green to fields of praise.