Cerejas

 

    I sit, contemplating the cherries before me on my Lisbon table

      Cerejas, plump, darker than cherry red, on the white plate. 

       I lift one to my eager lips, that first bite filled with hope,

     so often dashed when the richness of colour deceives.

   It is a triumph ... firm and luscious.

 

I choose another ... scrutinizing, comparing

and deliberately take the speckled one underneath.

I’m sure it won’t be as good, but I know as with life,

one cannot always expect perfection.

The imperfect cherry is a surprise ...

not quite as juicy but with a lemony tang

which somehow compliments the richness of the first.

 

Then there are the two on the right, tinged with a hint of brown

... too soft, over-ripe.

(I regret that I did not eat these yesterday.)

 

An unexpected tear trickles down my left cheek

resting there as I examine the darkest cherry, apart from the rest,

pristine but alone.

Taking it gently between my fingers,

I close my eyes so I am not misled by its beauty

and give myself over to pleasure ...

 

                                                         

                                                              Richelle da Costa, Lisbon 2012