When summer finds winter
and meets between and betwixt,
sunshine meets frost,
green meets red,
death meets life
in trees and harvest.

There is born the apple,
that sacred fruit
with a star inside,
red skin, white flesh,
opposite of man.

There is the apple
cupped by a hand
of youthful glow.
The hand is gentle,
yet strong;
young, yet tempered
by pruning
and picking,
and grafting.

It is the hand
of a goddess,
Idun,
who guards her
Western Garden,
that eden
of an orchard
where apples grow gold,
and the trees
are low and gnarled
and black with age.

There she guards
that sacred fruit
to which all gods
are beholden,
andare beautiful
to behold,
much like she
who tends them.

Most important,
most ignored,
Idun watches carefully
and wards against
too harsh a frost
and mischievous
creatures, like squirrels
or Loki, or Thiazzi,
who would steal
her precious fruit.

When she visits
the Gods,
she brings her
priceless cargo
in a brass-bound
casket of
applewood,
for like clings to like,
and it keeps the
apples sweet.

With her
wry-tongued husband,
who knows well
to make her laugh,
she lives in service
to her trees,
though every long while,
she visits her cousins,
the Norns,
beside Urd's Well.
Sometimes,
her eldest cousin
lets her draw sweet
waters, to nourish
her orchards.

Idun in an eden,
is happily content
with her apples
and husband
and trees that flower
and bear fruit
all at once.