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                                    Juliana Gray

We turn our backs, and each hydra head
of orange bloom that bore a tender, cute
and greeny vegetable—or is it fruit?—
has swollen to the size of a Samoyed.
We simmer soups, we bake our loaves of bread,
our casseroles, seeking to transmute
the summer’s plenitude of garden loot
to something we can save for winter’s stead.

We’re happiest when we manage to give the stuff
away. Exchanging food, the neighborhood
of men and women believe they can dispel
their disparate fears—there’s almost joy enough
for faith: that nature provides, that God is good,
that such an earth could never be a hell.

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