The neighbors want a new fence, but first
they need to take away all the overgrowth of ivy.
No matter how many vines are lopped off, next time
they look beneath the deck, there seems to be more ivy.
And mildew flourishes along the intervals in tile, darkening
the grout: peppery speckles with tiny leaf-shapes resembling ivy.
By the rusted tap and coiled garden hose, I find a clump
of leaves I can’t identify: not herb, not grass, not ivy.
But then again I’m not the type to police the growth in the garden,
preferring the surprise of what blooms; I even admire the green of ivy—
And green is the color of persistence, of what thrives despite the wars
waged on slugs and aphids: they’ll have the last say, sinking back amid the ivy.