When we stumbled on this still-life showing the lifecycle of a blackberry we thought “Ohhh! That’s what we should keep in mind as we eat the luscious fruit which is still in season into late September and early October: ‘Gotta flower before you fruit‘“. Then we remembered two poems to accompany a feast of them.
Blackberries are back. They cling near
little streams. Their eyes, bright
make tunnels through the vines.
They see their own thorns in the sky,
and the print of leaves.
At night they hide inside the wind,
ready to try the outdoors on.
They swing for distance, root for
fidelity. The truth is your only ransom
once they touch your tongue.
— William Stafford
I love to go out in late September
among the fat overripe, icy, black blackberries
to eat blackberries for breakfast,
the stalks very prickly, a penalty
they earn for knowing the black art
of blackberry-making; and as I stand among them
lifting the stalks to my mouth, the ripest berries
fall almost unbidden to my tongue,
as words sometimes do, certain peculiar words
like strengths or squinched,
many-lettered, one-syllabled lumps,
which I squeeze, squinch open, and splurge well
in the silent, startled, icy, black language
of blackberry-eating in late September.
Blackberry Eating, Copyright © 1980 by Galway Kinnell. From Mortal Acts, Mortal Words