December 19, 2011

The Great Tomato Massacre of 2011


The year of the tomato,
and the 3 plants took over a whole section of the garden,
wrapping around and bursting from the conical wire tomato cage
to keep it growing up and up.
Late fall, we had a bumper crop,
more tomatoes than we knew what to do with...
salsa and marinara mostly,
but at a pace I'd never be able to match unless I canned,
which...

So after an early frost, which killed all 3 plants
and left probably 100 fruits unripe and still hanging,
now drooping from the cage
now gallows like
for green-slowly graying fruit,
I pull the spidery plant from the ground,
unwrap arms from around the cage,
and scoop gray-green fruit into the compost bin.

How much life goes wasted?
How much of it is lost, annihilated, massacred by forces beyond its control?
And who is there to pick up what's left,
get caught up in the changing of the season and look down on it from a relative above?

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