Life among the Prickly Pear


Life among the Prickly Pear

Rain’s twofold curse: not enough
too much. Still, I take comfort

even among the thorns.
There is much to like here.

Its moonlight flowers.
Paddles fried with minced garlic.

Wren’s jubilant shriek.
The fruit’s red nectar.

I wake to distant screech owls
purring their desires on separate

slopes. Late spring, storms looming.
I close my eyes and the creek rises.

* * *

A draft of this first appeared here in June 2015, and I posted this version in May 2016.

In the meantime, two of my guitar heroes:

18 thoughts on “Life among the Prickly Pear

  1. The prickly pears persist through wet and dry spells – fascinating “model” plants – and they provide habitat for all sorts of critters – including humans with cameras focused on the minute details of bloom folds, hues. [Getting near that time again!]

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Prickly pears were imported into Australia in the First Fleet as hosts of cochineal insects, used in the dye industry. Many of these, especially the Tiger Pear, quickly became widespread invasive species, rendering 40,000 km² of farming land unproductive. The moth Cactoblastis cactorum from South America, whose larvae eat prickly pear, was introduced in 1925 and almost wiped out the population. This case is often cited as an example of successful biological pest control.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think they need to be really fresh. I’ve tried jarred nopales, and found them lacking. I’ve also bought some from the produce department of a grocery store, and was less than satisfied with them. It was quite simple to harvest the paddles on my rural property – the cactus was everywhere. At any rate, they may be an acquired taste. I even put them on pizza!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Pingback: Life among the Prickly Pear | IdealisticRebel's Daily View of Favorites

  4. Pingback: Life among the Prickly Pear | Restored Ministries Blog

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