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Cherry Tomatoes


They’re toy food, less than meals, hardly nutrition;
the buried contempt of Norlands
and Kennebecs is almost palpable.
Space for that tangle of vines
is taken from other life spans.
Numberless hanging globes split and drop
before they’re picked, their lucent colors
vanishing diagonally into funicular gloom.
Backs sacrificed for mere bites,
we straighten to overlooked staples.

After the first good frost
this carnival sags in its rigging
and the head of life pokes out of cellars
in the rimed ground of October.
Where now, a turnip may ask,
is that bubble delectation
diverting the palates of summer,
sprinkled with cheese and a vinaigrette,
halved on a ringing plate,
if any got that far so ready to eat? 

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