Jul 5, 2013

POETRY FRIDAY: Summer's First Bite

Summer is when I most keenly feel my southern roots. Watermelon, sweet iced tea, and fat, ripe blackberries are among my favorite summertime fare, and bring back memories of long, sunny weeks at my grandparents’ farm in rural South Carolina where my sisters and I would spend our days playing in the fields, picking blackberries, fishing in the pond, and often braving the leeches along the pond’s grassy shore for an afternoon swim. But nothing brings my summer memories more sharply into focus than the first bite of a juicy South Carolina peach.

Yesterday, on the way back from our shortened camping trip to Brevard, NC (have you heard about all of the RAIN in the Southern Appalachians—well, it IS as bad as they say!), we stopped by Black’s Peaches in York County, SC. Black’s is where my grandmother and my parents took my sisters and I to buy peaches every year, and it is truly a delight to be able to take my family there now. Yesterday, we bought our first half peck of summer peaches, then drove straight home to dry out our sodden pop-up camper. In between washing and drying loads of blankets and towels, I cut into the ripest peach and was immediately sucked back into childhood. Trying to condense the first bite into words was my Poetry Friday challenge for today:

One bite of tangy sweet, juicy, dripping peach,
And I am back in my grandmother’s yard,
Peach fuzz stinging my cheeks, chin dripping,
Dodging thirsty yellow jackets
While the hot afternoon sun shines down
And my sisters dance through sparkling showers from the old green hose.
I am so thankful for these sweet, juicy

Happy Writing!

Just one of the yummy peaches ripening on my counter!

If you live near north central South Carolina and want to try some great peaches, I highly recommend the following farm stands:
Black’s Peaches and Cotton Belt Bakery, 1800 Black Highway, York, South Carolina, 29745
You can pick your own peaches now through September 1. The sourdough bread in their bakery is amazing, as well! Click here for link.

The Peach Stand, 1325 Hwy 160 West Fort Mill, SC 29715
This is my super-close spot for fresh local fruits, veggies, and meats—they also ship! Click here for link.
Dori Sanders’ Peach Stand, 2101 Filbert Hwy (Hwy. 321), Filbert, SC
Dori is the author of one of my FAVORITE southern cook books, Dori Sanders’ Country Cooking: Recipies and Stories from the Family Farm Stand, the author of two novels, and is a super sweet lady. When I visited with my boys a few years ago, she was still at the stand, swapping stories with her customers. Ms. Sanders is a true South Carolina treasure, and you can visit her website


  1. The first peach of summer is always exquisite when it's really good -- that chin-dripping kind!Thanks for sharing this, and your memories, with the Poetry Friday crowd!

    1. Thank you so much, Keri! And thanks for hosting Poetry Friday this week!

  2. I wish I could take advantage of your farm stand recommendations! They sound great. Enjoyed your poem!

  3. Replies
    1. Yep, "Yum" is the word! I just had two for breakfast...delicious!

  4. Summer peaches here; watermelon at Carol's Corner, cherries at Julie Larios' Drift Record...the fruits of summer (and the memories that go with them) have burst forth!!

    1. I bought some cherries yesterday, Mary Lee! Can't get those local, but they are SO good!

  5. Just lovely. Those yellow jackets give your poem that realistic, not-quite-paradise touch.

  6. Yum! I live in Colorado, you've made me want to take a trip to the Western Slope, where they grow peaches. Those fresh, just off the tree beauties, are much juicier and yummier than the ones I buy at the grocery store. I'll skip the yellow jackets though!

    1. Colorado is so beautiful! Enjoy your summer peaches, Carol!


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