You called it the 'Winter of the Oranges,' that February into March when our love was new, and the downtown Farmer's Market sold thin-skinned navel oranges for cheap. You'd grab our reusable bags and head for 5th St, sampling each farmer's juicy segments before bringing home a ten pound sack. I'd never tasted such consistent sweetness -- orange to orange, sack to sack, week to week -- like nature had conspired to make every orange equal. Bursting they were -- skin too thin to peel with fingers -- they needed a sharp knife to slice them smartly into quarters or peel them whole, rind a single, perfect spiral, a three-way between peel, pith and fruit. That winter you squeezed the juice into goblets, overflowing. You poured your love into me. But Spring came. The knife bled. Something stupid I said. You, and the oranges turned bitter overnight.
First Published in Vox Populi, 2017