Where Love Grows

Mexican papaya, the kind available in stores

where I live, no taste as good as the ones

that grow in Dad’s back yard–silky soft sweetness,

melt-in-your-mouth. So how come no get

when I was there on one of my semi-annual visits?

The trees produce year-round. Dad no grumble, just

drags the corroded platform ladder to the skinny tree,

stre-e-e-e-tch his eighty-plus-year-old arm,

fingers barely brushing the swollen breasts of fruit,

goes tippy-toe on his rubba slippers, grabs

and plucks ’em off. Dad passed in April at 89.

Still get papaya tress in the back yard.

They all midgets now.

Talk story

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