Community Garden



I lead my friend along the hoggin path,

show her the last chicory whose leaves

have outgrown any danger of being eaten.

She photographs the newly made beehouse

with its hundreds of holes that wait for tenants.

I teach her how to say nasturtium,

shiver in the thin winter light

that creeps shyly over the ivied wall.

I start to think about the warm office

when she says that close to her home town

officials, dissatisfied with society

retreated to their country palaces

where they expressed their feelings through gardening.

I imagine secret messages spelt in flowers

and lakes dug in significant positions.

I look round at the reeds by the leaf-clogged pond,

the small note of organic carrot fronds.



Rowan MIddleton

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