Ode to Summer Squash

Summer Squash

There is no pleasure like picking the first vegetables of the season.
This morning wet, muddy.
Summer squash, it was.
Prickly leaves, like floppy summer hats, pushed out of the way.

How could just two days make such a difference? Look how big and bright.
Five. Lemon-yellow, bumps of Braille on their skin. Not a blemish anywhere.
Three are too big. Would I buy you at the store? Absolutely not.
I’d reach for the more tender, slimmer version of you.

But you are mine, and you are perfect.
Shapely, Rubenesque, just right for gratins, picklesfritters, and slaws.
I promise to check every morning, and when I do, I’ll keep an eye on the peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, and nasturtiums, too.
Only twenty-two hours to go.

David Leite's signature

[Editor’s Note:  David wanted me to let you know that he’s not a poet and he knows it. In his words, “I’m not trying to be fancy schmancy or Ruth Reichl here. I just was particularly excited this morning when I harvested my first vegetables.” We understand, don’t we?]



  1. There is just nothing like the satisfaction of cutting those first offerings from the garden. It always made me feel like I was ‘one with the earth’. I didn’t have a garden this year due to the drought in CA. I relinquished my share of water to the farmers so they could grow for all of us. Damn decent of me, huh?

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