Today's poem is by Lynnell Edwards

Planting Dahlias with a Pick-Ax

I have made their grave:

hacked at the ground with a pick-ax
a rough plot, some inches deep,
and shoved the squat butts
to the dirt. It was a quick job
at afternoon's fade, and without
apology to the chopped roots
split white and topside,
the infant border vine slapped
by the backswing, or the brute implement
itself, blade messed with green, stuck
with grass like hair to the bone.
I rake cover with my hands,
scuff back the dry moss, wish
the best for their vegetable souls —
full sun, steady rain, mild nights —
and assume the worst. Then turn,
shave the earth under my pink nails
and let the postman now striding near
bring whatever benediction he can.

Copyright © 2007 Lynnell Edwards All rights reserved
from The Highwayman's Wife
Red Hen Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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