Today's poem is by Samuel Green


At night, when we sleep,
something eats the leaves
of the gooseberry, leaves them
ragged, like the edges of pages
torn from a church hymnal.

It is some hidden worm, we guess,
but the soil at its base
yields nothing, nothing shows
in the glare of the flashlight after dark.

Each day the green edges recede,
until only the ridiculous thorns
are left threatening the air.

We try diatomaceous earth, tanglefoot,
powders & sprays, remove the fallen
leaves & re-till the ground around
the trunk. Carbolic acid doesn't work,
nor foxglove infusions, nor offhanded
prayer. What we know is something
needs a care we cannot measure
up to. Something else works in the dark,
more patient, more hungry, more sure.

Copyright © 2014 Samuel Green All rights reserved
from All That Might Be Done
Carnegie Mellon University Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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