This afternoon when I got back from a quick trip to the lab, I went out to harvest the asian pears on the lower branches - those still within reach of my garden's determined produce consumer, Annabelle Lee. The fruits are small - but I have two dozen or more on the tree - so tonight I sliced up a few, and combined them with a mild gouda for a wonderful treat.
There's something intrinsically gratifying about a fresh harvest - about planting a tree, about watching it grow, about watching it survive seasons of drought and excess rainfall, even about watching a crazy old pointer girl covet the fruits. It's the simplicity of it all, the lack of complication - that makes a bowl of pears seem perfect, perhaps even a miracle, on a humid summer evening.
SUMMER KITCHEN, by Donald Hall
In June's high light she stood at the sink
With a glass of wine
And listened for the bobolink
And crushed garlic in late sunshine.
I watched her cooking, from my chair.
She pressed her lips
Together, reached for kitchenware,
And tasted sauce from fingertips.
"It's ready now. Come on," she said.
"You light the candle."
We ate, and talked, and went to bed,
And slept. It was a miracle.