Friday, July 13, 2012

SUMMER RITUAL: An Original Memoir Poem

In June, I wrote a post about Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) that included a memoir poem about picking strawberries in my grandfather’s garden. Every visit to the home of my maternal grandparents in summertime meant a trip to Dzidzi’s garden to pick fresh vegetables. Dzidzi loved sharing what he grew with relatives and neighbors.

 Here’s is a poem about my memories of my visits to my grandfather’s garden:


My mother and I arrive at my grandparents’ house
late one Sunday afternoon.
Babci greets us in the kitchen
with cold drinks clinking with ice cubes.
Dzidzi fetches a small wooden basket
from the cellar, takes my hand,
and walks me down the stone path to his garden.
He leans over a tomato plant,
holds a fat red globe in his cupped hand,
and looks at me. I nod approval.
I can almost taste the tomato’s warm, juicy flesh.
We choose a dozen more and place them in the basket.
We pick three green, glossy-skinned peppers,
pull up a bunch of feather-topped carrots,
enough beets for my mother to make a pot of zimny barszcz
thickened with sour cream and floating with cucumber slices.
Every visit to my grandparents’ house
is the same this season—
a small harvest of vegetables—
and when we leave, I take home
a little basket of Dzidzi’s garden.

Jone has the Poetry Friday Roundup at Check It Out.


Ruth said...

What a lovely memory! Thank you!

Liz Steinglass said...

I like the last line. It makes me think about all the things you took home in that basket--the veggies, the love, the memory.

Donna Smith said...

What a great memory. I could almost smell the warm tomatoes. When I was a child, my mother let us pick and eat anything we wanted fresh from the garden, any time of the carrots, radishes, cucumbers, warm tomatoes...all with that fresh dirt and sweet, sweet new smell! Thanks for taking me back there.

Mary Lee said...

You dug up some great garden memories for me, too!

Linda B said...

I remember too, Elaine, those big gardens, full of the freshest goodness! Thanks for the wonderful memory, & now you've captured it, too!

Anonymous said...

I heard your moving in with you daughter and son in law.

Elaine Magliaro said...

Thanks to all for your comments about memories of my childhood. Spending time at the home of my maternal grandparents was truly an enriching experience for me. The memories of those days in my past are still vivid for me today. They have provided me with fodder for writing poetry.

Diane Mayr said...

Just lovely.

azita said...

I found you when looking up poems about rhubarb. Delighted by the discovery! Just wanted to say hi!