RIPE IN THE ARBOURS OF THE NOSE
Even rippled with sun
the greens of a citrus grove darken
like ocean deepening from shore.
Each tree is full of shade.
A shadowy fast spiral through
and a crow’s transfixed an orange
to carry off and mine
its latitudes and longitudes
till they’re a parched void scrotum.
Al-Andalus has an orange grove
planted in rows and shaven above
to form an unwalkable dream lawn
viewed from loggias.
One level down,
radiance in a fruit-roofed ambulatory.
Mandarin, if I didn’t eat you
how could you ever see the sun?
(Even I will never see it
except in blue translation).
Shedding its spiral pith helmet
an orange is an irrigation
of rupture and bouquet
rocking the lower head about;
one of the milder borders
of the just endurable
is the squint taste of a lemon,
and it was limes, of dark tooled green
which forgave the barefoot sailors
bringing citrus to new dry lands.
Cumquat, you bitter quip,
let a rat make jam of you
in her beardy house.
Blood orange, children!
raspberry blood in the glass:
look for the five o’clock shadow
on their cheeks.
Those are full of blood,
and easy: only pick the ones that
relax off in your hand.
Below Hollywood, as everywhere
the trees of each grove appear
as fantastically open
treasure sacks, tied only at the ground.