Shulling Peas

She sat on the bench,

shulling peas,

the sun hot on our faces,

the pods fresh picked,

the day bright with summer,

her fingers splitting

the new green glossy skins,

her oval, polished nails

severing the sides apart,

a thumb running along,

the fruit dropping into a bowl,

pinging hard on the glass.

Pods discarded, into a bag,

to go to the compost.

We ate some raw,

the greenness, the crunch,

wild earth taste of them.

Noon shone on the garden,

we talked of this and that,

the task was done.

“We’ll cook them for dinner,

add pepper and butter,

with bacon and small potatoes,

the next picking, chopped onion,

shredded lettuce and cream,

‘A La Francais’, delicious.”

So I learnt, I didn’t know

how after years of cooking,

pods bought in markets,

frozen peas from supermarkets,

that I would so long remember

your lit face, you’re lovely nails

your fingers podding the peas.




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