Parable, with Oscar-Nominated Film

A sign at the Asian grocery: 
               White Coconuts $2.95.
As if to reassure you 
buy the sweet white flesh 
there, intact
               beneath the green exocarp, 
the dense middle, the hard 
woody layer
enclosing the seed—   

In that scene from Minari,
there are no actual coconuts  
where Jacob persuades the greengrocer 
               to buy produce from him.
There are most likely packets
of dry noodles, bottles of gochujang
sauce, barley tea, foil-wrapped 
snacks. Bok choy 
and daikon. 

Back on the farm 
grandmother walking 
                sets the shed on fire. 

There is no rind or layer
to the hungry flames that lick  
at all the fruit stacked 
                lovingly in crates.  

In the morning, 
                white ashes on the ground
under which the water,
so difficult to woo in this land,
winds its selfish way.



A coconut, and all drupes, have three layers: the exocarp (outer layer), the mesocarp (fleshy middle layer), and the endocarp (hard, woody layer that surrounds the seed).

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