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