All morning in the cold,
bundled up and in line;
clear silhouettes of trees cut a rim
dark as viridian around the park.
Each of us is given a short
form: name, number, neighborhood.
Gulls give us the side-eye,
huddled near the trash bins.
I know what I want, among the list
jotted down in chalk by the volunteer
kneeling on the asphalt: Fuyu Persimmon,
lush as a peach at peak ripeness;
more delicious, I think, than plum or
nectarine. Virtue and longevity,
oxheart shine, twig after twig
prospering into bending abundance.
Quince or chinquapin? Keiffer Pear?
Rumor of a nut or a stone inside the burr.
Some ladies from a local club have brought
tasting samples of fruit jams and preserves.
Under a sign, another volunteer extols
virtues of the rain barrel. I sign up too,
walk finally to the table where I claim
exactly one sapling, ready to go in the ground.
Young tree, both tough and willowy, I’ll dream
zygotes and little orange planets in the tree one spring.