Cherry Picking

Inspiration to write. You should blog again, he said. I haven’t felt inspired lately. she said. I’ve been doing reno’s.

We all need a nudge sometimes, to get out of the rocking chair, climb the stairs and follow a passion. Life has a way of clouding our vision. Kitchen sinks, casings, plaster and china toilets. Litter our grey matter with inches and centimerters. Primers and paint. Chips. That block the arteries of inspiration.

The more fortunate among us respond to the nudges, awaken prior to the Quadruple Bypass, and start exercising the need to lead with our hearts, and follow with our brains.

Last summer I was at a U-Pick Cherry orchard, getting instructions on picking when the guide mentioned the abundance of rain received that summer had caused many cherries to burst the outer skin – which did not affect the taste or goodness of the cherries, just rendered them unsightly. Kinda like stretch marks – the young woman said.

I found that odd. Later, while sitting under the shade of a cherry tree, I reflected on her words.

CHERRY PICKING   By Sharon Lancaster

Bunches of cherries hang from the trees

Nuggets of flesh, impregnated by bees.

Families of Foreigners flock to the fields

Selecting the ripest, the plumpest, the sweetest

That the orchard can yield.

Laughter and language mesh into one,

Reaching and picking till each tree is done.

I listen, I watch, I observe,

I feel.

Alone in the Orchard, Alone, and surreal.

But not like Salvador Dali,

who painted his fears.

More like a Sage,

Knowledge spanning the years.

Everywhere I look I see harvest and wealth

Families and cherries,

Abundant with health.

But here is a cracked one, the flesh raw and bared,

Left alone in the orchard frightened and scared.

Not to be picked, selected or chosen.

Never to be sliced, boiled or frozen.

How does a cherry feel?

Left on the branch.

Was it purposely ignored or missed just by chance?

I choose to believe, I choose to hope

That one lonely cherry has methods to cope.

With the feelings of loneliness, rejection and loss

Being the one with the stretch marks.

The one that got tossed.