by DeMareon Gipson
I remember the smell of citrus
in antebellum summers.
I cried under the clementine tree
on Chinese New Year
in hopes that
something sweeter than what we had
would grow from the tears.
I remember the aftertaste
of the lemons that life gave me.
My hands are quite pruned,
yet still I squeeze.
I remember the first time I heard
my great-grandmother
preparing yams
before Sunday service.
I pray there will never be a “last.”
I remember how my eyes would light up
when they’d observe the sundried tomatoes
my cousin cooked his pasta with,
and the tenebrous sight of
blood pervading gravel
not too far from his garden.
I remember grasping white lilac
in my left palm,
believing that my touch
would enable them to thrive