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I always pick the gooseberries too early
Seduced by the striped sun green globes
Crowded like children queuing in a playground-
Pick me! Pick me!
Instead of waiting for them to soften
To a thick maroon
When they’ll fall
Right off the thorny stickleback canes
Into the waiting trug
As though they can’t wait
To be jam

for the dverse poetics prompt of 6/1/21: fruit

31 thoughts on “Patience

    • It’s one of those jams that you can’t even find at the store with the 98 different types of jams for some reason. They must be hard to grow commercially or something.

  1. Ahhh, I love this. Adore this imagery especially:

    “Crowded like children queuing in a playground-
    Pick me! Pick me!”

    It’s so vivid.

    • A friend who’s a landscaper brings me “junk plants” and one year it was gooseberry bushes! I’d never heard of them, but now I can’t imagine not having them. Better than strawberries or raspberries because you’re never tempted to eat them off the canes–too tart!

  2. I love gooseberries! In Germany they make gooseberry sauce to go with trout and jelly to accompany cheese. When I was a child, they were a source of amazement, and you’ve captured that in your poem, Xan. All good things come to those who wait – and patience is a virtue, as they say. I love your description of ‘striped sun green globes crowded like children queuing in a playground’ and the ‘thorny stickleback canes’. I’m sure they can’t can’t wait to be jam – as Sarah said, fruit is the only thing that wants to be eaten!

  3. I love gooseberries… ours are often yellow-green and it’s very hard to see when they are ripe enough. We cook them with sugar and thicken with starch and eat it lukewarm as summer dessert with cold milk… There is even an old quote saying
    Only Sweden has the Swedish gooseberries

  4. I love this whole poem :-). Especially the ending: When they’ll fall / Right off the thorny stickleback canes / Into the waiting trug / As though they can’t wait / To be jam 🙂

  5. This is absolutely splendid! I love “Seduced by the striped sun green globes/Crowded like children queuing in a playground.” 😀

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