On rain-sodden days, my lover
finds me transfixed
at the window, arms crossed on the sill,
chin cupped. He understands
it’s about the garden,
but he knows nothing of seedlings
and I don’t try to explain
how the neighbouring lupines—bleeding crimsons
into one another—prove
a higher power exists. Volunteer pansies—
they do this, too. A kind of tie-dyed
coalescence, each slightly different
and ever beyond mortal artistry.
To be civilized, truly, is to enter one’s garden
of a morning and take time
to cut and arrange flowers
for the dining room, the unremarkable sill
above the sink, the piano-top.
Perhaps to sit a while on a bench or step—
still damp with dew—
and be present
with the heralding birds.
—Do I make too much of this?
Gardens don’t prevent wars
or heal shattered relationships, but sometimes
on a rain-sodden morning
this modest patch of inner-city gumbo—
immune to the hovering police helicopter,
the perpetual siren-screams—
fills the heart of a watching woman
like a glass vase
left on the patio table
through the hours of a nine-day rain.