The problem with the last Creole tomato
sandwich of the season is that you never
know that you’ve just eaten it. Even as July
comes to an end, you convince yourself
that there’s still a basket at a roadside stand,
or a leftover bin at the grocery store.
And so you continue to reverently devour
them, but perhaps not reverently enough,
and one day—you discover that they are gone.
You have eaten them all, and now
you have to wait almost a year for the next
appearance of what must be the tomatoes
they eat in heaven—the huge, red near-globes
whose slices appear geologic in their juicy
complexity. You know the pleasure has to end,
but your wishful thinking—like a light sprinkling
of salt and a sharp grind of pepper—brings
out the essence of your desire, and you forget,
for a moment, that the seasons always change.