garden legacies

Yesterday’s Myrln posthumous post was a poem with a “life as a garden” metaphor. Reading it made me think about how many of the legacies he left are what continue to grow from the seeds of his thoughts, his words.
While the “garden” has always been a life metaphor for me as well, I tend to use it in a different way. And that fact is also a perfect metaphor for how we related as spouses: we started in the same place, with the same need, but we went out from there in very different directions.
Here’s my garden poem, written in 2002 and posted here (with photo) in 2003.
The Gravity of Gardens
They gave me a garden
the size of a grave,
so I filled it with raucous
reminders of sense:
marigold nests,
nasturtium fountains,
explosions of parsley, and
layers of lavender —
forests of tomato plants
asserting lush ascendance
over scent-full beds of
rosemary, basil, and sage.
And waving madly above them all,
stalks of perplexing
Jerusalem artichoke,
an unkillable weed
that blossoms and burrows
and grows up to nine feet tall,
defying the grim arrogance
of gravity.

may 02
My literal gardens are transient. When I move away, they decay away and are forgotten. Such is the nature of many of my legacies.
Once in a while, though, I need to believe in something permanent — hence, the two lilac trees I planted back from the edge of the woods around this house, where my brother most likely will not mow or snow blow them down when I move away from here. Someday, new owners will look out the window at the acres of rotting windfall and scraggly brush and old shaggy trees and see two blooming lilac bushes — a sepia landscape touched with unexpected color.

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