We planted seeds tonight in coffee filters
watered in clear-sealed bags to take-in sunlight
because we ate fruit
the kind that grow on trees
we began celebrating the Jewish festival called Tu B’Shevat,
a Matsuri for Trees, my daughter caroled in.
Thank you, God, for the gift of trees
abundant tree leaves
solid branches hefty trunks
seeds and juicy juicy fruit!
Of course we rattled off a solid list of animals
who depend on trees,
(come on, that’s basic).
Our boy smuggled-in kinkan
like pirate coins
raided the banana basket like loot
and it was
Japanese-grown, gorgeous delicious,
tips-of-the-bunch-shrunk in plastic
like a glove
he loves fruit.
And our girl,
marvelous spotter of tonight’s full moon
cuz it’s Tu B’Shevat,
sang, “It’s as bright and sparkly as the sun!”
And it was!
Swinging higher until now, hours later,
I’d have to step outside and walk a bit down the driveway to see its
orange orb petals of reflected rays.
She loves the sun, moon, and fruit.
And we painted,
swirled watercolors and acrylic
on canvas squares,
hers showing us
mustard and wakame leaves.
Also a border of crunchy red ones;
she knows seasons.
And because we are just that cultured, ahem,
we three painted to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons
and guessed when spring gave way to summer.
I chose to paint rain and clouds and everything I don’t always love,
Trees, too, and especially.
Everything needs water, not just coffee, black,
and sometimes water comes dark, ribald like the night,
earthy, not delicate, nope.
But then it rains and those drops fly out,
the barks, the peels of light
and then seeds
seeds coming alive
life coming alive again
in time for everything it needs to grow
We painted and planted and sang in Hebrew.
We ate truckloads of fruit for Tu B’Shevat.
Now they sleep and all of our seeds,
the best ones,
they are the ones that shall grow.
And isn’t it trees and seeds and the longing and picking of fruit that is continuance?
It is choosing a spot and letting the anchor drop on a place called Hope.
This is for me, Tu B’Shevat.