Spoiled fruit

For dverse, the line of poetry to use in the piece of prose (144 words) is from Michael Donaghy’s ‘Liverpool’

“she’d had it sliced away leaving a scar”

Spoiled fruit

The cherry tree grew in the middle of the tiny kind of garden that makes proper trees look like caged bears. Her mother planted it for the blossom and let it grow tall and broad for the fruit. When she was a child she had climbed into the lower branches to pick the under-ripe fruit, and later, when she inherited the house, learned to love the flocks of blackbird that ate the cherries as soon as they ripened.
Her neighbour complained that the branches overhung his lawn, the fruit dropped, the birds made a mess. When she closed her ears, he took a chainsaw to the main branch, tearing a hole in her childhood memories, the only children she’d had. It sliced away leaving a scar that wept amber tears until winter sealed the wound tight shut. The wound in her heart never healed.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

37 thoughts on “Spoiled fruit”

      1. WP won’t let me like or leave comments on a lot of blogs, yours is one of them, David. I hope the gremlins don’t block this message.
        I enjoyed your macabre little piece. You should write crime thrillers!

      2. I have to log in each time I want to leave a comment, but for some blogs, that fails. Yours is one. Can’t leave likes anywhere. It’s a real pain and it looks like I’m ignoring people.

      3. You’re not the only one, but there isn’t a single WP blog I can comment on without a problem. Some are just off limits altogether. I also noted that when I visit your blog, WP tells me that I’m not following, but I am. I checked. It’s completely screwed up.

  1. Well truly, you had me with the first line. “The cherry tree grew in the middle of the tiny kind of garden that makes proper trees look like caged bears.” Just a beautiful line.
    An excellent tale….the last line is the clincher.

  2. Wonderfully done, Jane! I love the images of the chainsaw cutting into her childhood memory and the amber cherry sap sealing the wound on the tree, but not her heart!

    1. There are so many things more important aren’t there? Like all that useless stuff we feel compelled to buy, regardless of where it comes from and how its made 😦

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