William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Under the Tree

Two apricots fell yesterday, and another during the night; they weren’t fully ripe, but they were sweet enough to eat — casualties, it seems, of the heat. The other fruit is large and coloring, two or three weeks ahead of the usual ripening time.

Food and shelter is a miracle. It’s not earned. It’s received. I don’t deserve the food on our table and the roof over our heads; to me, that notion is a righteous, self-centered one.

When we are born, we don’t need to earn our way in the world. We’re here to grow and to blossom. Before we realize it, though, our little lives may be pruned by fear, selfishness, and resentment; they may be stunted by thoughtless expectations and worn out beliefs; they may wither under the glaring light of good intentions; then, as we grow older, we may be surrounded by people who are convinced that our young lives are failing, or have already failed; finally, we may be driven to the same tragic conclusion ourselves.

The apricots fell early, that’s all. They were still beautiful fruit.

July 1, 2021


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