To say that eating an artichoke
resembles an episode
of passionate love-making
is stretching words a little.

One's beloved, to begin with,
is not normally boiled
in salted water then dipped,
bit by bit, in melted butter;

nor is the light of one's life
likely to remind one
of a greyish, scaly vegetable
shaped like an armadillo.

Still, there is something
vaguely, strangely familiar
about the stripping away
of petals over cleavages,

the nibbling of nutrients
that grow in succulence,
the knowing-in-advance
that at the end of it all

awaits if not a soaring across
the gulf of otherness,
a crying out,
a mending of the spirit

at least a rapture in miniature.


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