(also zucchini, green peppers, green tomato)
This is my favorite vegetable bowl. It has held twenty summers's worth of produce and still looks just as bright as shiny as it did back when we received it as a wedding present from our friends and dear neighbors Dot & Ted. All the decorative vegetables painted on the bowl are so cute, but see the darling little eggplant? Isn't it the cutest!
I don't know of many eggplants in literature, but there is an unforgettably sly image in True Stories by Margaret Atwood. She describes the furtive yet blatant behavior of a man who is suspected of killing his wife while on vacation in Spain:
" . . . in Barcelona not Madrid. So they're there and he's here and naturally they want him to go over, for questioning they say, and naturally he won't. He says he doesn't need the distress all over again. I'll bet. Not that I would either if I was him. I saw him in the supermarket last week. He was holding an eggplant and he said, 'Aubergine, it's a much better word don't you think?' He was running his fingers over the purple skin. He hasn't changed a bit."
from True Romances #1
in True Stories [a collection of poetry and very short stories]
by Margaret Atwood (b. 1939)
Canadian poet, novelist, essayist
Here is a timely poem from the same book:
our lives here winding down.
Why are we building fences?
There's nothing we can keep out.
Wild mustard, hornworms, cutworms
push at the edges of this space
it's taken eight years to clear.
The fields, lush green and desolate
as promises, are still pretending
to be owned. Nothing
is owned, not even the graves
across the road with the names
so squarely marked.
Goodbye, we credit
the apple trees, dead
and alive, with saying.
They say no such thing.
~ Margaret Atwood
In vain, have we attempted to own this peach tree
in our backyard, but it is not even pretending!