Saturday, June 22, 2013

To enter one's garden ....


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.

-Shelley A. Leedahl

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