Peering out on 8 year old legs
I see tall mint stacks and tomato vine shake
a trouser covered leg jiggled
revealing my Jidi.
Clanging of cane and old stiff leg upon glass door
Oyster shell hands gripping a smooth red pearl
“No one can grow them better than that”, he said.
Smelling of mint, earth and whte undershirt,
Sweat coating nubby whiskers-
brown soft boyish eyes marooned on an island of wrinkles
and permanent woe.
No pause, shuffling past.
Rolling the bounty onto newspaper covered table,
derby hat perched, pipe falling out of mouth
he quickly catches-tobacco spilling.
There on the center of the table
-the tomato like an offering to God
pointing cane toward the plates and knives.
“Slice it-sit and eat”
he sat watching me by the colored
waiting-smoke circling head.
The sun narrowed through the door as I sliced-
juices and seeds streamed down
pooling, soaking paper.
Pulp firm and intact,
I breathed in the sugar and fresh earth.
Biting into its flesh as it dribbled down my chin,
breathing in the summer it spent on the vine.
My skin becomes its skin, tingling and sated.
I see his face enshrouded by smoke swirls
and moted sunlight-hardened frame softening
he shifts in his seat-satisfied.
*Jidi means grandfather in Lebanese