MemberMay 24, 2020 at 3:39 pm
Hello Word Warrior,
Your story concept is so heartwarming and imaginative, I was taken by the lightness of your newly bubbled bliss. I’ve been writing some pretty dark pieces lately, but your piece had me thinking about “What if I include the four seasons, five senses, and some color into the mix?” Needless to say, I’ve become deeply inspired to commit to some fanfiction (taking an original piece of art and doing your own spin on it). To quote Aster, I know not what had come over me:
On Being Fruitful
It is summer, and you start as a poppy seed.
Big enough to call us parents; hard to fathom how small you’re inside of me. You grow quickly, a crumb solidifying into a bagel hole as we grill sweet corn and bike in the cricket-filled nights. Soon, you’re a sweet pea. A cluster of tart blackberries.
Fall comes; we boil apples and oranges and stir the cider with cinnamon sticks. When the cold blows in, you’ll grow larger than the winter fruit in my warm drink. I build the first snowman of the season while thinking you’re about the size of the carrot jammed into the snowman’s face. We press in several raisins to form a smile. It’s fun to dream and play.
We sip ginger tea near the crackling fireplace; it’s supposed to make me feel better. I miss the pucker of summer lemonade and swap the sweet memory with a drizzle of honey and squeeze of lemon. The nausea swirls like the colorful smoothie bowls popping up on Instagram these days. We laugh.
Why not try and replicate fruit art?
Blend the remainder of summer into a frozen treat. In goes the blueberries, fuzzy peaches, and slivered strawberries. We dip our spoons in and scrape the bowl while standing at the kitchen island. My feet hurt because you’re ripening into a heavy mango I can’t quite grow accustomed to. The cool slush that freezes my tongue is the only thing I will be able to keep down in the coming months.
The black thunderstorms dwindle to blue-purple rain, so we know it’s spring. We watch for tulips to sprout and butterflies to kiss the fennel and dill bulbs nestled in the window planter. The neighborhood children giggle while toeing their reflections in puddles and pull their tricycles out of the garages. They’re impatient to capture the first spring sunshine, and so are we. We can finally open the windows again and inhale the green of freshly mowed meadow until our eyes tear. Apparently, you’re also anxious to stretch your cramped limbs because we nearly lose you. You’re ready to tumble out of your little basket, but we’re not. We cry because you’ve stopped kicking. The local doctor believes it’s over. You’re the size of a cabbage head, flavorless layers of leaves. A crop gone wrong.
It doesn’t matter that I carried you for several seasons and watched you blossom into life. Was it too much to hope for a full harvest?
There are two colors in the emergency room: White curtains that are whisked around me, and mint be-scrubbed nurses. I am cold, so I pretend you’re a warm rhubarb pie cooling on the counter, the first of the season. I try to imagine staining my fingers pink to cut a slice but can’t. We are told to wait; we’ve waited so long already. We pray to merit the fruits of our labor, and we do. Because suddenly, you’re back.
Our little pumpkin.
You’re thirsty. You drink and grow as the sidewalk fills with chalk art and bunnies poke out of raspberry shrubs. You’re round as a watermelon now; your wiggles and squirms tell me it’s almost time. Almost time to hold you close when spring will bleed into the blaze of summer, and I will look back and marvel at the blessing of being fruitful.