'Right now, they're like sticky, puckered grubs,'
says Nathan, tapping one of the willies
with a bit of twig.
Nathan has a way with similes
because, before he became a willy farmer,
he was a poet
who specialised in pastoral scenes.
'Some people eat them young -
early willies have a certain...'
he circles his twig in the precise, sharp Spring air,
conjuring le mot juste,
'... piquancy. Poignancy?'
He looks at me,
'Do I mean poignancy or piquancy?'
Behind him, each willy is a soft, pale
chrysalis and I think
he has never looked so beautiful.