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June 13: Plum

June 16, 2013

Prunes

Harvard takes perfectly good plums as students, and turns them into prunes.
Frank Lloyd Wright

Such sour grapes, or plums perhaps,
to see all change that comes with age
as great tragedy or at least misfortune.
Grapes can be made into raisins or wine,
and a supply of either is met with demand.

But connotation’s everything: a plum job,
desired by all, but we turn up our noses
at prunes. Fine silver builds a patina,
but perfectly good skin, even well-kept,
will bear lines if lived in. Like the path
the cattle take day after day across fields,
the smile lines carve as deeply as frowns.

I waste my time telling the young
to enjoy that fine, firm body, toned
and tanned,  looking sweet to the taste.
Today’s pleasure foreshadows change
most would rather ignore, hoping
when the time comes for soft plum light.

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