Saturday, July 10, 2010

Yesterday's Raindrops

Yesterday’s Raindrops  

Early this morning I went back to the blackberry patch.  On the way, a rabbit hopped off when I stopped and rolled down the car window.  A second one froze in the grass beside the road.  At the patch, I stopped the car and got out. A crow overhead in the pecan tree complained about my intrusion, before flying off and leaving me to my thoughts.

A good friend recently invited me to pick blackberries on their property, in another location, and as as a disclaimer, told me that most of the berries in the front were gone, and I'd have to get into the brambles to get any volume.  I had always thought that was one of the Rules of the Blackberry Patch.  The best berries are always just out of reach, and when I occasionally venture back into that thorny prison, it seems entirely possible that I'll never emerge.  As with most things of value, those sweet berries come with a price.  And I wonder, are blackberries sweeter because of the thorns?   At least this time I was smart enough to take Don's advice and wear my fingerless weight lifting gloves to protect the backs of my hands, and they worked like a charm.

The patch is overgrown with vegetation, with sycamore and sassafras, pokeweed and pecan.  As I pushed my way into the thicket, sassafras leaves, like large mittens, soaked my hair and clothes with yesterday's raindrops.  From just out of sight, a deer snorted, and ran away.  I picked a good mess of berries (not to mention a few stink bugs and a preying mantis), stored away the memory of a refreshing morning in the woods, and returned home.  Some of the berries went to the freezer, and some on our breakfast cereal, and from this vantage point, I can say that my incarceration was definitely worth it.  Parole can be sweet.

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