In my garden I have sought to wrest from nature
what’s untamable in both of us.
What grows here, grows because I have knelt
in the dirt, have spread seeds, have weeded and pruned.
In summer my garden hose trembles slightly in the heat’s
shimmer and lies expectantly on the afternoon grass.
My vegetable bed grows thirsty as the day wears on; when the
five PM train blows its horn, I give a twitch of anticipation.
Evening approaches. The lantern of the sky goes dim.
Creatures of the dark—bats, owls, crickets, some poets—
awaken one limb at a time. The night is so still and sweet
I can smell the moon’s silver rind and suck pure water
from the clouds. Cucumbers and tomatoes sprawl naked
beneath the Milky Way’s expanse, dreaming of sweaty rain.
With the twist of a still-warm valve, the hose stiffens.
Hearing the blood-like rush, my garden opens its mouth
the way all that is alive, desirous of life, opens its mouth.
After, the hose relaxes in a cooling earth’s embrace
and fruits and vegetables swallow what they can…
When the sun again scorches shadows we will beg for her mercy.