hands and peaches
Six years ago my brother Nathan sent this poem my way. Ever since then I find myself reviving it because my dad grows peaches, sends them my way, and I enjoy the harvest of hard won juicy jewels.
As I bit into an ever so slightly dusty peach today I pictured his hands. It was the labor of those hands that gifted me with my lunch today. All my life I have loved looking at those hands. They are big, strong, sure, steady. Many times they have actually lifted me up off the ground--I remember. But a couple of summers ago I watched those hands wash the dirt ever so sweetly off of the feet of one of my grandchildren. It did remind me of the Savior.
From blossoms comes
this brown paper bag of peaches
we bought from the boy
at the bend in the road where we turned toward
signs painted Peaches.
From laden boughs, from hands,
from sweet fellowship in the bins,
comes nectar at the roadside, succulent
peaches we devour, dusty skin and all,
comes the familiar dust of summer, dust we eat.
O, to take what we love inside,
to carry within us an orchard, to eat
not only the skin, but the shade,
not only the sugar, but the days, to hold
the fruit in our hands, adore it, then bite into
the round jubilance of peach.
There are days we live
as if death were nowhere
in the background; from joy
to joy to joy, from wing to wing,
from blossom to blossom to
impossible blossom, to sweet impossible blossom.
-- Li-Young Lee