Handout 1: Pear's Complaint
I have raged for thousands of years.
I was on the other tree in Eden
and I escaped Greece unexploited by the Gods.
I never was fruit of fantasy for seers and bards,
nor the food of tales for old wives.
For I am not so red, not so self-contained,
no so easily held or thrown.
Never have poets said "the pear of mine eyes,"
nor any of my kind served homage to the teacher's desk
and I keep no children from the dentist's drill.
Yet my veins run sweeter
and my flesh more tender.
Slit my skin with baby's teeth
and run my juice down your throat.
I will feed your cells and your soul;
I will satiate your hunger.
But an hour later, I will not dance in your dreams.
You cannot grasp my complexity.
I am not ordinary enough to be your small miracle.
I am not shaped in a friendly red ball.
I am too esoteric to play roles in your myths.
So imprison me in your still life—
In a timeless bowl with the banana and grapes—
Frozen in a moment—attainable.
At other times, feed on me when passions blur sense:
In these epiphanies, I am a treat—
exotic but common, tangy but sweet, long but round.
Savor me then in the ways you can.
Then, tomorrow, return to your apple
with its insidious worm.
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