An update: Walking home from the subway this evening, I caught sight of a father and daughter at the mulberry tree, with dad in his suit jumping up to reach the ripest fruit on the higher branches, and daughter waiting to grab the bounty. I had to wonder if it was the same pair I encountered a year ago. But at any rate, I grabbed a couple of the darkest berries, which have gotten to their point of sweetness as the crop has peaked and thought it worth reprising this former trip to Mulberry Street.
I started a trend. After noticing that the mulberry tree on the corner a couple of blocks away was heavy with fruit, I returned with a container. In the short time spent plucking berries from branches hanging low over the owner’s wrought-iron fence and across the sidewalk, a parade of passersby stopped, gawked, and even joined in. Some were horrified at the very thought of plucking berries from a street corner in Brooklyn: “Mom, what’s that lady doing?” Others had never even noticed the fruit tree growing in their midst: “What’s that, a blueberry tree?”
Then there was the father who launched into a story for his young daughter, about a mulberry tree in the backyard of his childhood brownstone. “Know what I used to do? I’d put a blanket down on the grass and just shake the branches so they’d fall down, and pretty soon I had a whole…
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