prickly pear and paw-paw

My Grandmother’s cactus blooms in my mother’s yard now.  It’s a prickly pear; paddle-shaped with lemon-colored flowers.

Grandma's prickly pear looks great in Mom's yard.

On Arlington Court, the plants tell stories.  Even the ones that are gone.

There was a paw-paw tree by number 17 for years; from it I tasted paw-paw for the first time.  It was like a custard with a slight citrus flavor – maybe lemon or lime.  I had paw-paw ice cream once, from Ellen’s on Capitol Street.  Neither it or the raw fruit agreed much with my stomach, but I’m glad I ate it anyway.

One year, before Susan died, we decorated the paw-paw tree for Christmas with old CD’s.  Many of them were promotional copies from my job at the radio station (bad music).  I remember stepping out on the porch roof from the second floor window to hang CD’s on the branches.

They turned and glittered like a strobe light; the teenagers brought out a boom-box and played Dancing Queen by ABBA.

The tree is gone now.  It had a big split in it that couldn’t be fixed.  It was hard to let go; but we knew it had to be done.

It will always live in my mind – the tree that made us dance.

About these ads

Director of Communications for the West Virginia Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. Spent 15 years in public radio in various roles (announcer, music director, program director, and station manager).I love to write - for print, broadcast, and web. Creating good content makes me happy.

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Posted in Life, Writing

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