There’s a certain squeak that happens in the bends of your bouquet when you’re walking quickly home after getting caught by a passing man in a fedora while you’re stealing live greens for your breakfast.
I’ve plucked blooms from the front yards of stranger-neighbours, but I’ve never been so bold as to clip pieces of edible foliage. There certainly seemed to be a level of judgment in the man’s eyes as I proudly admitted that I’d been exposed.
What!? It was clear that the owners of the swiss chard and the dinosaur kale had no intentions of harvesting their own leaves from their lawn, or else they’d have picked some of the bigger ones that were too bug-bitten for my liking. It was comforting though; seeing those trails of space where the little guys had left behind some organic quality control – showing that they were, indeed, safe to eat.
I imagined those owners, the ones who ignored their garden, up in their Victorian house, reading magazines and drinking chamomile in bed together. I looked up to their soft-lit windows and smiled with thanks.
I can’t wait to use my urban forage, to cut them into tiny little strips for my eggs, or into some chunks for a beet salad, or pulverize into pulp for a green drink.
I’m starting to realize how actually possible it would be to live entirely off the food in my own backyard.