sipèstisyon

by Mckendy Fils-Aimé

Don’t point with your index finger at a fruit-bearing tree; the fruit that you’re pointing at will be a good-for-nothing, bad fruit.

in an effort to encourage healthy eating
my love & i sign up for a produce delivery
service. a week later, the first order arrives. 
we open the box & inside is a circus

of misshapen crops: three-legged carrots, 
strawberries split like forked tongues, 
apples in mid mitosis. my love explains 
that they are rejects, deemed unworthy 
of grocery stores & thrown into exile. 
we gather our outcasts to make a meal. 
& i think of all the times that i have been 

called not good or not good enough, 
caught in the crosshairs of someone 
else’s doubt. a tree opposite of nature’s index. 

a seedless orchard, a drought in a grove
called potential. but i’m as resilient as a fig.
as defiant as a field of echinacea. 

i will wait for the rain to come 
& if it doesn’t, i will dare to grow anyway. 
watch me dig my feet into the dirt 
taking water between my toes. 

watch me unfurl my arms to stuff 
fistfuls of sunlight into my mouth. 
watch me nourish & be nourishment.
watch me become my own harvest.

Writing Prompt: Choose something that is not considered conventionally beautiful by society–even something that is considered ugly–and write a poem in praise of it.

Mckendy Fils-Aimé is a New England based poet, educator, and footwear enthusiast.  He has been fortunate enough to share his work on stages all across the United States. His poetry has appeared in The Collagist, The Journal, Boxcar Poetry Review, and elsewhere.