What I Learned in the Orchard

I watched an old man
pruning apple trees in December
laddered during snowfall
straining for the farthest branch
and realized I had not considered
that quickening is a year-round
lifelong commitment to growth
through paring back

So you
bygone year of want
you my bygone sister
buried expectations
in awful post-truth
It’s snowing

Still I ascend the highest rung
and start cutting
limbs leggily reaching for sun
because flowering requires tending
brings fruit for sustenance
and only now have I learned
what fruit from labor really means
That man has taught me a few things

For Mama Zen’s Words Count in the Imaginary Garden. My poem went long but I beg forgiveness as frankly that never happens! :)