He sleeps at the edge of the nursery, spends his days in the shade of the mango tree. He keeps the planks for his future coffin nearby. Old friends, the tree will ask questions. They keep him up some nights.
He has brought her branch after branch, hundreds of varieties. She shows him how you may begin with the same seed and grow two very different fruits. Like children, he says.
This is a place of study, he says, for the mangoes of the world.
We are fleeting, he says, but the fruit is eternal. We eat and stay a little while, and then we leave.
I am no scientist, he says, just a servant of this tree.