Not only the sugar, but the days.


From blossoms comes
this brown paper bag of peaches
we bought from the boy
at the bend in the road where we turned toward
signs painted Peaches.

From laden boughs, from hands,
from sweet fellowship in the bins,
comes nectar at the roadside, succulent
peaches we devour, dusty skin and all,
comes the familiar dust of summer, dust we eat.

O, to take what we love inside,
to carry within us an orchard, to eat
not only the skin, but the shade,
not only the sugar, but the days, to hold
the fruit in our hands, adore it, then bite into
the round jubilance of peach.

There are days we live
as if death were nowhere
in the background; from joy
to joy to joy, from wing to wing,
from blossom to blossom to
impossible blossom, to sweet impossible blossom.

-Li-Young Lee


9 thoughts on “Not only the sugar, but the days.

  1. What a lovely poem. I’m so glad that the poet included the dust. That’s part of the charm of fresh-from-the-tree fruit: being unafraid of the dust, being undone by the sweetness of life.

    I like the background for your peaches, too. My guess is that’s a William Morris design. It’s lovely, and perfect.

    I’m so behind in my commenting, but I’ll be trying to catch that up later today. I have read your Oregon trip post a couple of times, and keep getting sidetracked as I run off to explore this or that you’ve mentioned. I’m so glad you had a good time. Here’s to happy Independence days — of every sort!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I just bought some dusty peaches at our local co-op. There’s nothing better than a good peach, and nothing worse than an uninspired bad peach. Thanks for sharing this poem–it’s perfect for today.


    Liked by 1 person

  3. “There are days we live as if death were no where in the background.” What a beautiful thing to note! So many days are almost imperceptibly tainted with death in the background. Every moment we hurry as if we’re running out of time. Every feeling of regret. Beautiful poem.

    Liked by 1 person

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