Apple Crumble

She refused to ripen under the fading suns of autumn
That single berry like the watched pot that never boils
Unable to become what she was named to be;
A hint of green, white and even pink,
Deepening to red but not yet black
Though the rest of the cluster had made the grade.
So impatience braved the hedgerow bramble and briar,
Hawthorn and holly, watching the spider escape the invasion
As we made the plunge, ignoring nettles and webs
Just to add flavour to the crumble
But leaving the un-ripened berry to its own devices
Hoping for better days.
A few apples are left for others to scrump
As we march into the kitchen for peeling and coring,
Sugar and spice and a bought bag of topping
Squared off with a pat of butter
And baked brown at a hundred and eighty degrees
While custard steams on the stove.
Next day we found he’d been out with the mower
The hedge shaven and shorn in the October trim
Squared up for its own topping of the first snows of winter,
The spider’s web wrapped up and rolled round the blades
Nettles and hedge clippings despatched to the November bonfire
Our un-ripened berry with them.
Jonathan joins in a search for just a few blackberries.

October 2011