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My Body Is An Orchard

Title poem from my debut poetry collection, My Body Is An Orchard

By Taylor NealPublished 6 months ago 2 min read

By Taylor Neal, edited by Em Keeler

My Body Is An Orchard takes the form of a collection of original poetry written during my time as a steward of the land in northern California during the summer of 2022, in reflection of the ways my body gives and receives, serves and is served, heals and is healed, by the land, by love, by violence, and by the souls with whom I move through contact.

To order the full poetry collection, My Body Is An Orchard, in print, follow this link to place your order.

sometimes I feel

my body is an orchard

ripe in the middle of July,

standing rich on the blackest of soil

ready to suck and enjoy.

my body is an orchard

where men come

to pluck

at their leisure,

a harvest.

free of charge,


they fill their baskets,


along the way.


sweet to sour

choice of the day,


versions of me tested

spat out or digested.

their tongues

lap me

their teeth

gnash me

until I resemble

the perfect fit

for their palette;

a proper pairing.

peaches from plums,

an orchard

breaks through my fertile,


sun-soaked skin.

and they see

not the beauty

in the unruly abundance,

not the fairness

of fecundity,

not the rainbow

of my fruit


and ripened

at varied degrees,

but profit



and where

is most valuable

to be extracted from.

my surfaces


a harvest

a feast

a bite or two from each.




before the half-eaten cores fall from their careless fingers

as they move through me,

plunge through me,

their waste left to decompose -

I back into myself.

boot prints


into virgin soil.

sweet and sour


under heavy

black rubber

boot tread

tracks on my skin.

their cigarette butts left

lining my tender

freshly mulched paths.

they find relief

in the shade

of my branches,

build camp

weigh me down

and clog my porous land.

threatening the growth

in the orchard

my expansion,

their fear.

keep it modest,


spray the pesticides.


to define my patches;

peaches from plums

apples from pears and

the pink ladies.

they section me off with fences

and gates

and little signs.

they try to make me easy to navigate




the harvest.

my body is an orchard

where men come to feast.

peaches and plums

they fill their baskets their bellies,

and when the summer is over

they leave.

- my body is an orchard

nature poetry

About the Creator

Taylor Neal

A multi-disciplinary artist, writer and sex worker's advocacy support worker, Taylor's cumulative practice comes together as a holistic exploration of identity, sexuality, and how the embodied subject navigates space and the natural world.

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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Comments (1)

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  • sleepy drafts6 months ago

    Oh, Taylor, I am * so * happy to see you on Vocal! Editing "My Body Is An Orchard" was an incredible experience and I am so excited to see you sharing it. I can't wait to read what you bring here. Your poetry and photography are truly so stunning. 💓💖

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