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April is the Coolest Month – Just Poets Favorite Poem for April 10

As part of National Poetry Month, Just Poets members will share their favorite poems along with a brief note about why the poem is their favorite poem. Today’s poem is selected by Patricia Roth Schwartz.


Michael Rhynes

Forbidden Fruit

Dear Eve,

Please forgive me for not having the courage to set the record straight about the fall of mankind. I know eons have passed, and every generation since has cursed your name, all because I didn’t have the fortitude to stand before god and proclaim my love for you.

It was not the apple I wanted, but your love. I’ve seen you on nights when the moon was pregnant with meaning and the earth was fertile with desire, craving, yearning, and longing to caress your cinnamon skin with hands made of brown clay.

On days when the sun was at its sexual peak, I dreamed of cooling you off with the sensuous waters located at the base of my honey-dipped tongue.

I loved you before you came into existence. I loved you before there were apples and serpents. I loved you in your nakedness. How could I have been ashamed of harvesting the passion-colored fruit from your tree?

It was my desire to become a man and join with you in perfect union that caused the fall of mankind.

Eve, given the chance to do it over again, I would bite from your fruit, delicately extracting the seeds of your existence, and nourishing them in the fertile soil that is my love, to flourish for all eternity.

We would then walk out of Eden hand in hand, soul to soul, heart to heart, like two lovers who respect, admire, and enjoy each other’s bodies, instead of two repressed refugees fleeing from shame that was not ours.



Just Poets Member Statement:

This poem, by  Michael Rhynes, the longest standing member of my workshop in Auburn Correctional Facility, has a depth of emotion combined with height of imagination which entrances and delights.

– Patricia Roth Schwartz


“Forbidden Fruit” fruit appears in Guerillas in the Mist, and Other Poems (Olive Trees Publishing, 2008).



One Response

  1. Michael’s name is spelled wrong above the poem –it is RHYNES — not Thymes…

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