Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


The Gardener

Since the phlox are dying
and the daisies with their bright bodies
have shattered in the wind,

I go out among these last dancers,
cutting to the ground the withered asters,
the spent stalks of the lilies, the black rose,

and see them as they were in spring, the time
of eagerness and blossoms, knowing how
they will all sleep and return;

and sweep the dry leaves over them and see
the cold earth take them back as now
I know it is taking me

who have walked so long among them, so amazed,
so dazzled by their brightness I forgot
their distance, how of all

the chosen, all the fallen in the garden
I was different: I alone
could not come again to the world.

Credit


Copyright © 2003 Patricia Hooper. From Aristotle’s Garden (Bluestem Press, 2003) by Patricia Hooper. Used with permission of the author.

Author


Patricia Hooper

Patricia Hooper is the author of four poetry collections, including Separate Flights (University of Tampa Press, 2016) and Other Lives (Elizabeth Street Press, 1984).

Date Published: 2017-09-12

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/gardener