We sit at the kitchen table,
Conversation as random as the peaches
We choose from the bushel basket.
Order does not matter--
All will empty out in the end.
Our histories are grafted.
This summer alchemy
We learned in the bone of our childhood.
The fruit already garnered
from glossy leaves and blue sky,
aligned on weathered, paint-cracked sills
to wait the ripe of now--
Yesterday too soon, tomorrow too late.
We handle the soft flesh gently,
Stripping ruby skins to gold, honey-streaming,
summer-soft words, recounting piecemeal
what may this year be said.
Our hands busy, there is always somewhere to look
When bruises rise and the sweet juice at our wrists
is salted with tears. These intimacies
are as healed as ever they will be.
We do not offer one another condolences--
we are that honest.
Knives in strong, firm hands,
We bend to our work and the telling
which this December will gleam gold
and secret on the pantry shelf.