I live in Lassen County on six acres with my husband Kam and malamute Sakari. The trees and mountains inspire me; the solitude nourishes me. I run a workshop Thompson Peak Writers’ Workshop and have taught in prisons and schools. Work published in: The Red Rock Review, The Kentucky Review, The Main Street Rag and other magazines. Nominated for a Pushcart, Blue Fifth Review 2015. My third book Cathedral of the Hand published 2016 through Finishing Line Press. Website: www.diannahenning.com
Preserving McIntosh Apples
The orchard owner instructed that apples were best kept
individually wrapped in newspaper,
stored in a cool place. Tenderly wrapping them,
we sat across from each other, husband and wife,
cautious lest we bruise one. Content, we remained silent,
as though we could read not the newsprint,
rather each other. After twenty years together,
words become a sideshow, and didn’t we delight that we secured
fruit for winter—for ourselves and for our children?
How long ago we stored for winter no longer matters.
Frost-bite killed the following year’s yield,
so we didn’t go apple picking. But perhaps we are still
in the orchard and you are holding firm the ladder
while I navigate branches. We might be thinking of apple pie,
or mason jars filled with apple butter.
But in reality, we called it quits. You moved far away,
I remained, so there was no preserving that year,
yet, still, you steady the ladder.
©2017 Dianna Henning
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