Monday, September 28, 2015

The Orchardist

He looks over the old,
abandoned orchard;
rows of overgrown apple trees,
their gangly branches
arching to touch 
other trees' branches,
crammed with vertical suckers,
unpruned for twenty years,
leaves of apple trees
still breathing the air.

Outer twigs on the fringe
still producing sparse blossoms
of pinkish-white,
still carrying their sweet fragrance, 
the signature of spring,
to the old orchardist,
recalling the promise;

memory an overcast dream
now fringed with loss.

A Brown Thrasher serenades
from the dense inner leaves,
an oriole calls from high
on a dead branch,
honeybees still visit for pollen.

*          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *

Come September,
blemished and shriveled apples
will ornament these old branches,

will still be found
by climbing raccoons;
opossums, deer, even foxes
may eat of the fallen fruit

and enjoy it with wild abandon,
not noticing the imperfections
of these small, wrinkled apples,
or the absence of the old orchardist.

© 2015 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations

Vergennes Township, Kent County, Michigan