Reading Michael Pollan has reoriented my brain a little as regards who’s the boss of me. He reckons a mysterious vegetable intelligence has been breeding us all the while we have been breeding plants. We are symbiotic in ways we hardly recognize. No matter, I have my own reasons to serve.
Laying in the Bulbs
Who profits as we propagate roses, daffodils,
apple trees, corn, forsythia, mountain ash –
the edible, the inedible? They do – the plants.
That’s why they raise us, seducing us with beauty,
alluring aromas and tastes, trippy alkaloids. So
we become their legs, spreading them everywhere.
We breed them up, redoubling their hold on us–
corn growing ever bigger and sweeter as it migrates
from Mexico to Midswest to Northeast.
Apples swell and sweeten from crab to honeycrisp.
Cannabis grows danker, stickier, bursting with resins
to better discombobulate the hybridizing herbalist.
Daffodil, paperwhite, jonquil–spring heartbreakers–
a bag of mixed bulbs and a bag of bone meal cost less
than lunch at the diner. Well, not counting the digging.
Who cares what green mind directs me to grow them?
Laying in these early bloomers, buttery as April sun,
is just the way I spit in the eye of looming winter.
Note: unpublished draft