Mr. Grumpypants, a poem by S Francis

A perfect heirloom tomato sits on the table.
We lean in,
Elbows on the table,
Sleeves rolled up
And begin our discussion,
Our important discussion:

What do we do with this perfect fruit?
She asks.

I chuckle at the very imperfect vegetable staring back at us
A weathered old man
Laughing at the bland store brand orbs,
So perfect they are too easy to pick.
Old man tomato reminds us we got the better deal
In his cantankerous way.
I tell him,
I am going to slice you up in perfect thick slices and sprinkle a little
Salt and pepper on your wounds.
He scoffs at me.
She says, two words for you,
Mr. Grumpypants:
Cabrese Salad.
He snorts at her.
I think: I got it, old man;
And sharpen my favorite knife.
Before his protest reaches my ears
I slice him in three
This one for me
This one for her
And this one…

We walk out to the garden
I dig a hole
She scoops up some compost
And we bury the crotchet
And smile for our future harvest
Of imperfect little fruits for our table.

By Night’s Dark Embrace, a poem by S Francis

Night’s dark embrace of these candles of petition
Speaks a soul supplicated on knees in moonlight.
A mere cricket in the chorale: “Rejoice!” chirps ‘cross
The fallow field. The shadow cast here seeks to love.

This journey took so long. This journey took too long.
Now day sets its weight down upon prayers’ shoulders
Tired of digging the grave to bury the soul
Of Ophelia. “She still lives! Be still. She loves…”

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