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Grapes

Having spent years learning how grapes grow,still I am stopped in this vineyard where a forty-year-old Concord quivers under a windless April sky, stretches forth tendrils like fingers, lending a handhold, a steadying grip to a struggling Himrod vine. Delicate blossoms of white tatting perfume this green hillside, transporting me to B.C. Italy where I hear an old Roman poet proclaim: "If one be wise, he will retire to a vineyard, and if he finds one friend he can trust, he will guard that friend with his life."