Various and Sundry Poetry


It grew, without intervention, in the front yard,
despite the less-than-fertile soil, despite the first
unexpectedly arid weeks of autumn, despite the garden’s
dangerous proximity to a litter-strewn street,
despite dog droppings and sticky sap, despite
telephone wires and a carpet of fallen foliage left
to rot and disappear into obsolescence.

And yet, unaided, unwatched, untended,
the clover insisted, answering this spectacular neglect
with a steady, steely patience, waiting
for a rare rain or the fickle generosity
of a stranger emptying the last inches from an old water bottle.

So now, November, and an anachronism of spring
has sprung. What was barren has entered into the thick
of an immaculate conception. Something fleshy is on the verge,
sprouting its bright green wings.

I don’t know how long you will stay close,
warming my skin with yours, breathing into me
your moist and swirling air.
But I am certain that even this brief oxygen
will be enough.