Academic journal article Pennsylvania Literary Journal

Fig Tree, a Prose Poem

Academic journal article Pennsylvania Literary Journal

Fig Tree, a Prose Poem

Article excerpt

Life branches out before me like a fig tree, I think, remembering Sylvia Plath, right there in front of King's Cross square, wondering where I should go next to reach my friend's house, where he lives with other five illegal Romanian immigrants. Life branches out before me into the colorful crowd, and I think this is freedom, swaying on my bone-sharp grim, and it's November 19, 2003, and the low sky above looks thin like aluminum. Before language, stones piled in my mouth, but I've never felt so immense and so utterly insignificant at the same time, loneliness ivying into me, the way I do here. The crowd around suddenly looks denser like a tightly knit rib-stich, shoulder to shoulder, ulnas touching like new scaffolding, breaths coagulating into the crisp air necks bent, eyes glimmering as if the flavorful brew scurries sugarless into a yellow cup. I see a woman meeting her friends, standing tall with long, thick, beautiful hair falling in strands from under her scarf, desire wrapped up around her middle finger, laughing with so much pleasure that I can almost taste her joy the way I savor ripe, bruised figs. A tote bag swings on her shoulder, cradling in tightly the hint of books, and she must be twenty five, life fleshing forth in fulsome peals of laughter. I remember her today, as I turn the page in a book by Sylvia Plath, a chilled bowl of ripe, bruised figs on my table in Duncansville, Pennsylvania. …

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