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June 26, 2024

A Gardener’s Musings in Coastal Georgia

Is this spring; air sun-scorched and swollen, wet?
In this deep Southern climate
spiny cacti and spiky sago palms
thrive even with benign neglect,
but delicate flora
sea-blue hydrangeas and sunset-pink impatiens wilt,
thirst for daily attention.

Bird baths need cleaning and filling,
little pools to slake a songbird’s dry tongue
and cool its tiny body.

I weed and water, prune and pamper
gladly doing the work of the optimist
because she who gardens
must be an optimist:
one who believes
weeds will be conquered and
empty space will fill with fruit and flowers
in beautiful abundance.

With joy, the gardener soothes her aches
and cools an occasional sunburn,
small prices to pay
for the pleasure of digging dirt
in sweat soaked clothes,
trusting that growth is possible
and rain will wet the earth
if not today then tomorrow.

That is what a gardener grows.