Landscape, with Wind and Tulip Tree

This entry is part 63 of 92 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Spring 2011


Here is the season of growing, so you are digging
somewhere in a garden, your hands turning warm

soil and putting in seed. Even those without a yard
can put up wooden boxes on their back decks

and pour sackfuls of rich brown earth. Such neat
rows, each headed by a tiny plastic triangle listing

how much water, how much shade; naming
what comes out of the harvest moons later—

heirloom tomatoes, stoplights of bell peppers,
cinnamon basil, sweet bee balm. My mother never

planned too hard about what things should grow,
or where— after chopping vegetables for stew,

she threw the seeds that clung to her hands
past the kitchen door, and months later we’d see

her thrift multiplied among the zinnias and
nasturtiums, latticed across pearled gravel.

I think of these tiny patches of almost wilderness
as a breeze stirs the tulip tree from top to bottom

and my heart picks its way among detritus of fallen
blossoms, their deep pink underbellies and the four-

fingered green of leaves like hands smoothed
open, ready to catch what might fall from the sky.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

Series Navigation← BalmFrom the Leaves of the Night Notebook →


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