DIANA ROSEN’s essays, flash fiction, and poetry appear in many online and print journals and anthologies. In 2020, an essay will appear in “Far Villages” from Black Lawrence Press, and poems will be published in “The Book of Sighs” and the journals Existere Journal of Art & Literature, Poesis Journal, and The Reform Jewish Quarterly. Red Bird Chapbooks will publish her flash and poetry as “Love & Irony”.
Nectarines! It’s a Heckuva Fruit!
Juicy-warm from the sun, broiled with goat cheese
and honey, a must to bring my dad just to hear him
laugh, recite again from the Carl Reiner-Mel Brooks’
recordings of the “2000-Year-Old-Man.” The velvet-
caped man reveals he once dated Joan of Arc,
married hundreds of times, had 42, 000 children and
not one came to visit!!
“I don’t care. But they could send a note, write, ‘Howya, Pop?’ ”
True, Dad didn’t date Joan of Arc but he did date
Pearl, his memories kept in a thick album of Kodak
black and whites with their curvy edges slotted into
those triangled black corner holders pasted on dull grey
scrapbook pages with “Me and Pearl” captioned underneath.
Or, “Pearl and Me.” Or, my favorite, “Guess Who?”
That Mom had no compunctions about this totem
of his life before us said a lot about their marriage
‘til death did them part. My stepmother helped Dad
buy a new suit and tie to meet Pearl and her husband
for lunch following her surprise call. You know what
happened. A civil conversation. The longer ride home
than to the restaurant. The scrapbook returned to
the shelf. Dad didn’t even reach a century much less
two millennia yet to the end, smiled to see another
fuzz-less peach, that sweet nectar of summer, its tight
smooth skin not unlike Dad’s, with its signature blush
of red. I still miss our calls.
“Is this the writer, or the other one?”
“What’s the secret to your long life?” Reiner asks,
“Nectarines! I love that fruit. It’s a heckuva fruit.”
Previously published online by Poetry Super Highway