Lucy Alexander #40 Strange Fruit (apologies Abel Meeropol)

Up north no fruit familiar

the trees are seasoned by

rhythms that know no winter

no spring, only rain, no rain,

tears or blood-sap drips into forest

so dense with wait a while and the

buttress of the meeting trees

(now lonesome for the gathering)

up so north there is hardly north left

the snails are blue and the frogs are yellow

and the forests hold

secrets in the water.

Up north you are prey

to the salt in the water and

the huge moving ancient in the mud

and the tiny insects that

feast through your skin to your blood

don’t be mistaken or lonely for the moon

in the white flesh of this berry

in the tussock of the cassowary

snakes swim in the water

and the vines take hold and will

not release you.

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