Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Lonely harvest

I love fall, but there is something of loneliness there, too. I took this photo in October, when Bonnie and I were walking at Asylum Lake. It was a beautiful day, and this scene shares that beauty, but it struck me as lonely, too - a foreshadowing of the desolate, late fall, days to come.

It called to mind this poem, which also speaks of desolation and loss, this time in a garden setting. The poem, in turn, calls to mind my father, and I wish we could chat for a bit.

Just as the poem hints of spring gardens to come, I look forward to more father-daughter talks someday.
Lonely Harvest
by Margaret S. Mullins

As a child, my father helped me dig
a square of dense red clay, mark off rows
where zinnias would grow,
and radishes and tender spinach leaves.
He'd stand with me each night
as daylight drained away
to talk about our crops leaning on his hoe
as I would practice leaning so on mine.

Years later now in my big garden plot,
the soggy remnant stems of plants
flopped over several months ago,
the ground is cold, the berries gone,
the stakes like hungry sentries
stand guarding empty graves. And still
I hear his voice asking what I think
would best be planted once the weather warms.

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