Summer Tomato – Love Poem

Summer Tomato:
I’m not talking about those
Mushy wannabe red globulous things
In plastic trays in the pro-duce section of the store –
I’m talkin’ ’bout tomatoes born
And raised in the heat of the summer sun,
Sassy summer tomatoes full of juice,
So tangy and sassy that before
You can stick your fork into a slice
Lying innocently upon a plate,
One of those bad boy slices
Jumps up and slaps you across the face –
Twice.
No, not talkin’ ‘bout those demure sweet things,
Those tame ‘maters with bland flavor –
I am talkin’ bout those full fledged
In your face, deep red, full of bite,
impertinent summer tomatoes
And we all know the best ones comes
From the gardens of your mama,
Your grandmama, a neighbor, your own backyard
Or from a basket in the back of some sorry looking
Pickup truck parked on the side of the road –
“Fresh Vegs – Cheap!”
The bed filled with sweet sticky pearl kerneled corn
and all sizes of ‘maters: Rutgers, Better Boy, Homestead –
none of those trendy purplebrownromagrape ‘maters,
unpretentious no apologies ‘maters,
or still moist from dew butterbeans,
Begging you to open them and strip out the beans
Into a bowl – plopplopplop
And those toe-may-toes…
Warm from the sun – skin smooth and tight
Sayin’ to you –
Stroke me, hold me, bite me –
Slice me on the plate with those cooked butterbeans
And corn and let me join my juices with theirs –
Spoon me up, sop me up with warm golden cornbread…
And swallow down with sweet iced tea –
Summer tomatoes – The feisty street punk of tomatoes –
No sweet mushy debutante,
No dry flavorless academic,
No all on the outside nothing on the inside
Vegetable hypocrite…
The Real Summer Tomato:
‘tween my fingers and my thumb,
Watch out belly – here.it.comes.

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