Mango

You pick it up in the market, press its belly against your cheek, pull in its scent, test for a firm core. in the cart, next to a jar of pickles, bag of radicchio, salsa, it lolls on its side, bands of red, yellow, touch of green near whatís left of a stem. Drumming your fingers at checkout, you are sprawled, sandy, singing under breath, Underneath the mango tree me honey, and we can watch for the moon, dizzy from sun blazing the same stripes of ripe color, smell drifting down from fronds you wrap around thigh, arm. You find yourself at home without knowledge of how you came. No matter, bag on table, cutting board, best knife, you begin to slice, each stroke necessitating a kiss, a slurp of juice. The droplets that form on the blade plead for your lips, tongue, teeth but youíve made that mistake before. It now lays, exposed, whole strips of flesh, long slender seed & whatís left of the inside. You begin to suck. There is no better way to do this, no other method with such proper effect, that allows no strand the color of sun going down behind Adirondacks in summer to be wasted. You drag teeth along outer skin until nothing is left but it. Juice runs from corners of mouth, down chin, slides to neck. You come up for breath. Afterwards, you sit, bathed in the bloom now growing in your nose. You search, frantic for any extra shred on the skins, then remember yourself. You begin to pick, taste each bit stuck in hums, smell your thumb, wrist, forearm. Collecting the flaps of color now pale, exhausted, you thank each, show them to compost, think the whole way back of what else you need at the store, of a mango grave thriving in Maine snow, of whether youíll let yourself pursue this globe of light & sin again. All thatís left is the seed. Gibson Fay-Leblanc