Flutter Press, in the form of Sandy Benitez, and I have been in contact.  I’m very excited to be published by Flutter Press again and to have artwork by Diane Kremmer for the cover. It takes a village to raise a child, It takes a community to proofread, give feedback, help to refine one’s chapbook. I’m grateful to my long-time critique group, Candy Curran, BG Thurston, and Sharon Harmon for helping to separate the wheat from the chaff, and to Helene for assisting on technical issues.  While the blueberries have just passed, I still have the last ones picked in my refrigerator.  I’d like to share them with you here.



They were heaven—sweet food from the fairy realm

I ate as we picked along the road, into the field where 

three sheep watched us warily

we picked into the woods at the swamp

The first time mum and I picked blueberries I was three

Mum gasped when she stepped into the swamp

then wiped a muddy high heel in the leaves

I laughed at the silliness of wearing heels and skirt

looking back she likely just didn’t take time to change 

when she saw how I took to these berries

The day she died I brought her homemade blueberry ice cream

dad said she wasn’t going to want ice cream anymore

he sat at the kitchen table, and she lay alone in the next room.  

I sat with her while breath rattled in and out

slower and harder each time

I pick wild sweet berries and eat bowls of them with thick cream

mix them with lemon and maple syrup for blueberry pie in July 

far from home now in forest edge garden each year

I enter a contest with the birds to see who can harvest the most

 And I remember the first time


About elainereardon

Poet, writer, gardener, herbalist, pottery, painting—bumping into magic, peeking around new corners.
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7 Responses to

  1. Margaret Q Babbitt says:

    Well done! I want some blueberry ice cream!


    • I think now’s the best time to get it– kids are back in school, so the lines are shorter. There’s a trick to making it, so your berries are’nt solid purple fruit pellets.


  2. Sharon Ann Harmon says:

    Thanks for the nice mention and I can’t wait to see your book!


  3. Joy Kaubin says:

    Very sweet, Elaine!  Thanks, Joy


  4. Jackie says:

    Congratulations on the book! WOW!!! Your blueberry story is so bittersweet. If I were still young and tender, I would cry. It makes me worry that you are still in mourning, but that’s because I know you. You feel things so deeply…


    • Hi Jackie, thanks!One of my neighbors called this AM abut this poem. She said she could picture it all happening, who was there, and how it unfolded as if she had been a witness. As we spoke, and I told her that my dad hadn’t called me, that I had just been in Cambridge, seen this ice cream that would make my mom happy, and so went up. I explained the unusual feeling of entering my familie’s house- and how I was unhappy that
      Dad had called the visiting nurses, but not me. When I said that, I remembered him sitting at the kitchen table in such despair, and my heart moved, or something in my heart moved, like when blankets drop off the bed. I felt lighter, and forgave him for not calling me.


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