Blossom-tipsy from walking in the orangery,
and with the pale sun feigning summer through the glass,
we pare off our winter skins and lie beneath the citrus trees.
Afterwards we feast on oranges, your fingers
slipping segments between my lips until I bite.
And as we harvest orange peel from the folds
of our discarded clothes, you whisper histories
of the sweet and bitter variety, sighing
for your other, more exotic, lovers:
Citrus sinensis, Citrus aurantium.
Later, when for the last time you unclothe me,
you find me as unashamed as fruit and juice-ripe.
Together we un-appled Eden, and now I ache
for the weight of an orange.
By Jo Senior
This poem was Highly Commended for the Poems Please Me Prize 2014
Illustrated by Harry Ibach (top) and Jon Munson (lower)