zone of noon or, how to eat a pear

It requires a shift in perspective, an escape from linear

assumptions. Start from the top, not from the side. This is not a

still life. There is only sunshine, hunger, and the fruit. It is


not a woman; “she” does not have hips, nor waist; that is not a

rump you grip in your palm, but, rather, nothing less than the

widest of an infinite number of concentric circles. The stem, when


you twist it out—give it a good hard yank and it will come—is only

a stem. If a bit of flesh comes out with it, suck it off like a bad

metaphor. Then toss the stem away. The birds will eat it. Don’t


anthropomorphize the spackles as freckles, or it will be chilling

indeed when you bite off the “head.” You must do this without

hesitation. It is not a head. The skin is not skin when your teeth


cut through its wet paper. The flesh, white, cold, is not flesh.

This is not a religious allegory. Do not be afraid of the fibrous

stalks; they do not form a spine. They feel nothing for your


solipsism. They are a sogged remnant of the branch and hardly that,

for you can crunch right through them should you so desire. The

rest of it gives way in your mouth in a thoughtless instant.


By now, if you are lucky, the juice of the pear will be puddling in

your hand and streaming down your arm. Note I did not say “your

thigh.” Lick it up if you must, but be aware that it will taste


salty, and less like a pear for your arm. In approximately six

greedy bites the core will emerge, five sections of membrane

tougher than they appear; yet notice that they do appear. The black


seeds inside, always five, are beautiful, yet they are not the eye,

the key, the answer, or the Truth. This is not the unknowable

centre. It is the end of one meal, and the beginning of another.