Harvest Unbidden

Downhill from the house, in the creek bottom next to the walking trail, the wild persimmon lives from ground level upward, trunk-to-trunk with the oak.  Their branches and leaves intermingle.  The hard persimmons on the tree’s north side hold tightly to their stems, waiting for their process from tannic tartness to fruity sweetness.  Softer, most of the fruit on the south side have almost arrived.  A few have released their hold and made twilight snacks for returning coyotes and deer whose signature tracks remain.  The deer–and at least one human passerby–have also plucked the sweeter, low-hanging fruit.  It is the season of waiting, ripening, and the harvest’s first-fruits.  By mid-November persimmons throughout East Texas will lie rotting among fallen leaves, their sugary, alcoholic aroma proof of abundance, more than deer, coyotes, and others need.  Yet that is no waste, but evidence of a superabundant, normal order of providence beyond mere reason.  What intoxicating extravagance!