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Sweet Lemons

By John I. Blair

”Do you know the land where lemon blossoms blow,
Where in the dusky grove the golden oranges glow?”

Goethe may have Sicily in mind,
But Italy is not what I remember.

I’ve visited a land where lemon blossoms blow,
In my Aunt Edna’s yard, behind her bungalow
In Colton, California. The giant lemons there
Were firm and sweet, the oranges small and hard.

My Aunt was plump and kind.

The afternoon we stopped to visit her
Was cold and hushed, December
In 1953, four days across the southern desert
And the mountains, before the Interstate
Made traveling homogenized.

My Aunt picked winter lemons from her tree,
Sliced them wafer thin, baked lemon pie,
A pie we liked so much
We sneaked some lemons past the border guard

When we drove back to Kansas.

©2005 John I. Blair  

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