The Next Garden

The Platonic Ideal.

In catalogs, we find the garden raised up to the Platonic Ideal. I could no doubt achieve such a work of wonder, had I unlimited funds and if didn’t waste my time writing or sleeping, cooking, cleaning, reading, etc. Or else had in my employ a head gardener with three full-time assistants. As it is, it will have to be whatever it is, again this year.

The Next Garden

The waxing Sugar Moon hangs like a lamp
in my living room window. Just enough light
to cast dim shadows, specters of rustling limbs.

Waiting for dawn to break on the first morning
of spring, there’s no hope that winter is done.
By noon flurries will cover the ground again.

But no matter. Gardening catalogs have arrived
in the mail. Within, rosy-cheeked outdoor types
realize a vision of Eden amid piles of pricey gear.

Raised cedar beds sprout from weedless mulch
connected by a trellis over which morning glory
has run riot. The bugless rows teem with green.

The next garden is always pure as the driven snow
that prevents it from being planted at the moment.
It is awesome as an imagined but unwritten book.

Nowhere is there sweat or mud, blisters or blood.
No bad back or sunburn, ravening rabbits or deer.
Only the recollected deliciousness of plump tomato.

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