Art by Akshita Sinha
I am barefoot in the garden barren-handed gathering
flat-crowned heads of poppies twists of sweet pea.
Crescents at my fingertips scrape off the sepia of spring
ten moons loaming as the apple tree
supple-skinned cotton-green strums its pastoral.
The soil waits breathlessly to release its resin that miracle of scent
performed by the land with rain.
Bitterly began the buds
now scallop-edged Selznick crinolines blooming extravagance
above renegade seeds. Strawberries shelter pointlessly
abandoning sweetness for days
no longer small or aggrieved by cloud every skin
and its bones defined by a pained shaft of light.
Detached from their murder a trio of anthropological crows
observe the activity of my field
their clever occasional notes dubbed into the composite murmur
of trees. My dog plunges between gnarls of bromeliad a wild
animal feeling out his hollow of rest. At a respectful distance I track him
to take notes fetch water collect specimen.
Digging down to the cool of the roots he buries the distress
of his illness emerges parched
watery botanicals clinging to his golden fur. The bees
are our accompaniment with dexterous patterns of transfer
pollen in their pockets vigilant against storms.
In the house I string up spent heads and hips install flowers
to assist the living. This harvest of seed bract and husk
prepares a space for flourishing. Birds gust towards us
through the front screen door. Heading fast to our hearts
playing on our desire for a swoop upwards.
Kathryn Hummel is an Australian writer, researcher, editor and multi-media artist constantly on roaming. Author of legion uncollected works (some award-winning) and six books of poems, her latest is Lamentville (Singapore: Math Paper Press, 2019). Follow her on Twitter @katscratchez and check out her website here.