Fallen apples

Familial ties, fairytales and the forbidden fruit

Featured in

  • Published 20221101
  • ISBN: 978-1-922212-74-0
  • Extent: 264pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm), eBook

‘THE APPLE DOESN’T fall far from the tree,’ said the woman from the abortion clinic on the other end of the phone. She repeated this proverb or idiom – with Turkish, Germanic and Russian origins – several times during our conversation.

I could not bring myself to agree or disagree with her insinuation, curled in my grandmother’s worn chintz recliner. The broken left arm of this enormous chair hung like a disfigured bird’s wing. Of all the reasons I was considering a termination, the genetic taint of a man who was emotionally unstable at best, physically violent at worst, was not one of them. Did this woman, I wonder now, also use this strained apple and tree analogy, implying nature trumps nurture, on traumatised rape victims? It does have a simple, appealing logic, even if its bucolic imagery – a fallen apple resting on a soft blanket of grass, protected by the leafy abundance of the mother tree – couldn’t be further from the reality of deciding to terminate a pregnancy.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

If you are an educator or student wishing to access content for study purposes please contact us at griffithreview@griffith.edu.au

Share article

More from author

Scarlett fever

Non-fictionThe competition was notable for its shift away from being a Vivien Leigh lookalike contest. The bid to find a woman who, instead, ‘most closely’ resembled how Scarlett ‘would act and speak today’ and embodied ‘her spirit and sass’ opened up the search to any woman with a bit of chutzpah, including, in theory, Black and other women of colour.

More from this edition

Umami, 2018 (painting by Anna di Mezza)

Body of work

In ConversationThe ’50s were a time of tremendous optimism and energy, yet they also had a dark underbelly. It was a time when women’s roles were diminished – they were often expected to stay home and be housewives. In the US, African Americans were living under segregation, particularly in the south, which caused significant racial tension. There will always be negative and dark aspects whenever human nature is involved. My paintings straddle a fine line between humour and horror.

A serving of home

In ConversationI think we should be proud of where we come from and be proud of what this country can offer us. We’re unique in our food culture here – we should be embracing it, and we should ask for native produce.

Stay up to date with the latest, news, articles and special offers from Griffith Review.