Tonight: The Lemon’s Lament.

posted in: Day In The Life, Poetry 8
Limon, citrus, from Franz Eugen Köhler’s Medizinal-Pflanzen, 1896. Image: Wikipedia.


The Lemon’s Lament
by Mary Fons © 2015

A lemon’s a tragic figure,
And we’ve all got juice on our hands;
Without wish to understand it,
We make lemony demands.

We clamor for slices and wedges,
Ne’er valuing his or her whole —
Unless there’s food to squeeze it on,
A lemon rots within th’ bowl.

“Water with lemon,” we oft request;
“Lemon with my fish!”
While lemon must quell its agony
And roundly reject the wish

To feel fingers peel away
Its pockmarked, pithy skin,
Exposing tender fruit meat,
Poised to drip down someone’s chin.

Nay, this has never happened;
(A lemon hardly peels!)
Instead it’s razed into sour wafers
With no regard to how that feels.

Tabbouleh, pound cake, salad dressing
All need a touch of tart;
For the chef to achieve th’ flavor profiles,
It’s tang they must impart.

‘Course they won’t then toss the lemon in
To whatever dish they serve;
The lemon’s tossed into the bin,
(The callousness, the nerve!)

But Lemon knows they cannot do it —
It’s accepted this as fact;
It has no life beyond a garnish,
The squirt its closing act.

For when we choose a fruit to eat
The lemon has no place;
It offers only pain to man —
It’s written on his face.

Lemon plays the outfield, always
Never pitcher, never hitter,
Forever weeping acid tears;
And you wonder why it’s bitter.

*Hello! I thought I’d post a recently revised and updated version of The Lemon’s Lament tonight. Whenever life seems a bit on the bewildering side, writing fruit poetry makes everything better. This is an actual fact of honest truth in my life. Read this one aloud to someone you love who is nearby: husband, girlfriend, cat, plant! All of ’em at once!

8 Responses

  1. Colleen
    | Reply


  2. J M
    | Reply

    And the lime, the lime never gets the time. I’ll say it once again – and I almost promise – almost – never to mention it again- maybe a half hour of radio somewhere? A kind of Chicago slam of sorts, nothing too off the wall, but give something like that good thought. Anyhow, lemons don’t have it nearly as bad as limes. Anyhow, take good care my non-blonde friend. Hope all is well with you. Have a good week Mary Fons.

  3. Carol-the pencil lady
    | Reply

    Funny you should post this today…we have a Meyer Lemon tree on our deck, my first one, i have always
    wanted one because Meyer Lemons are the best but alas, it has only 2 lemons on it-ready to pick today or
    tomorrow…every time i walk by it, i get excited over the “harvest” but then quickly wonder what can we do
    with just 2 lemons??? Sometimes life is bitter irony.

  4. Tracy Volansky
    | Reply

    This made me laugh… and feel bad for the poor lemons, all at the same time.
    Having grown up in So. Cal, we had lemon trees in our backyard. Lemons are one of those fruits you take for granted and never pick or give to your neighbors, becasue everyone has them . The only time my mom would ever send me out to pick one was when the garbage disposal was stinky and I would shove it down the sink to make it smell better.
    Now I’m wondering about all those poor lemons that would see me coming out the back door, quaking in fear, praying that their fate wouldn’t be our garbage disposal. Poor little guys…

  5. BjoLiz
    | Reply

    Love the poem!

  6. J M
    | Reply

    I took a link to the Cantaloupe poem – loved it- that was cool. We grew cantaloupes, my dad kicked seeds in with his boot heel on a cattle tank bank for kicks. They grew and grew and grew.

  7. karen swann
    | Reply

    Delightful! So when life gives you lemons, you make poetry. Sounds much more soothing than lemonade.

  8. Barbara
    | Reply

    Funny, as I was grocery shopping a short while ago, I passed the lemons, they looked just like a lemon should when you need one, I passed them by, didn’t know what I would use it for. Poor lemons 🙁 (They’re good in poetry). Feel good Mary.

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