A Short Story on the Website of
the Red Dirt Writers Society

Aunt Vi's 4th of July Rhubarb Pie
by Larry D. Foreman (Sep 2007)

          When I was young, we always spent the 4th of July at my Aunt Vi’s. She lined up tables in her front yard, and all the relatives brought salads, jellos, potatoes, meat dishes, and desserts galore.

          Every year after dinner, my Uncle Lewis would pronounce loudly, “Sis, bring on the rhubarb pie!” Everyone would laugh but me. I didn’t even like the sound of the word rhubarb pie. Obviously, he was playing to the crowd, but I was happy he left the real desserts for me.

          One 4th of July when I was about 14, my mother stood behind me and whispered, “You’re going to eat some of Aunt Vi’s rhubarb pie, or you’re watching fireworks with the family instead of your friends.” When my mother whispered instructions, you’d best follow them. She handed me a small piece on a paper plate.

          I sat by myself, openly distraught, as if anybody cared. I cut a small piece and lifted my fork. I thought, “Down it quickly and don’t gag.” With squinted eyes, I thrust the fork into my mouth. To my surprise, the pie was not bitter, but sweet, with a tang of strawberries. “Hey, this was good!”

          Every 4th of July thereafter, I always sang out loudly - before Uncle Lewis, “Aunt Vi, bring on the rhubarb pie!”

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