When I Was A Child

When I Was a Child

When I was a child
The early autumn moon rose like a Silver Fox
Over the distant black cliffs
Of the Columbia Plateau.
Down in our Wenatchee Valley
So many apples fell to the ground:
Winesaps and Winter Bananas,
Red and Golden Delicious,
Jonathans and MacIntosh–
Every May blossom
A handful of late summer crunch
Juice from every petal,
Every grain of pollen to the hive.
Up on the Plateau
The unresisting wheat
Broke like surf behind
The combine’s simpler blade.

Silver Fox, you
Who run backwards through time, tell me
Of this year’s fruit,
The bushel yield of grain.
What have you learned
From that old river of myth and blood,
Apples and wheat,
River of snowmelt and memory?

–Sandy Jensen

One thought on “When I Was A Child”

  1. I must have been asleep at the switch. This is a perfect pitch poem – and I think lots of people can relate to it – no small feat. So often your poems paint a visual picture and then zing, the last lines allude to myth and blood, snowmelt and memory. You sucked them in! People have to really think about it instead of admiring the beautiful words and images. Nice sketch too – it looks very, very familiar.

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