Soft, tender, sweet, and a little gritty, fresh figs never cease to amaze me. I still remember the first one I tried: a lone ripe fig in the garden of a family that took in and cared for pregnant teens. "Would you like to try one?" I was stunned, expecting the cloying sweetness of a dried fig and instead receiving subtle perfection. I had never tasted something as magnificent.
When we were hoping to get pregnant before Zosia was born, I held superstitious beliefs about fresh figs. All those tiny seeds, so gracefully conveyed in a single fruit. Could there be a more suited symbol of fertility? I devoured them straight from the store, my hopes and dreams for a child growing with each delicate bite.
I still eat figs with caution, nervous about the power they contain. And now, awe. Creating, sustaining such life. It takes such steadfast energy and commitment, but the fig does this with grace, imagination, charm.
I spend the year scanning the produce aisles of the grocery store, hoping for that perfect month when figs will arrive; unlike so many other fruits, there's just a tiny window that fresh figs can be purchased-- a magical midnight bloom. And yesterday was this day. And oh, I am happy.