So who is the child and what is she doing on a snowy day in say 1962 near a bare trunked peach tree in a yard in Brooklyn?
It is amazing how this peach tree, and probably many others culled from its discarded pits, have been in the background of moments of my life. Having grandparents and great-grandparents perhaps, who were busy farming most of their lives, whether here or in Italy, I was quite familiar with the “pitfalls” of growing fruit trees. I only regret that I don’t have more photos in my archives of the large trees that grew here and there unbidden perhaps, in my childhood playgrounds.
This peach tree grew well and long. In the springtime, it would exude a brownish sap, that ants would harvest, while I watched on, inhaling their formic odor and wondering where they would take it.
In winter, it would just sit there. Nobody really minded it much. It just sat there, in the yard, but the peaches.
Oh, the peaches. Like a fine wine, fragrant and fuzzy. The pits were sometimes dangerously unhinged. You could see the seed inside, and taste the bitter, bitter taste of cyanide, although at the time, sucking on the pit would not cause whatever poisoning cyanide does. We just ate the peaches, and threw the rest over the side.
So my childhood was spent climbing, circling, staring at and eating the fruit of, this wonderful gift of a peach tree. Like a friendly spirit, she or he would watch over us kids and bide the time until once again, a wonderland of peach-ness appeared and joined in the fun.