This is how it is now in these times.
What grows around me matters big time.
The sunflowers and the nasturtium seed
planted in giant plastic containers.
The tiny sprouts in the morning grown taller,
little leaves and stems taking perfect shape.
Garden plans are always with me,
what to keep with me in the space available,
however large or small, where I’m connecting
with the earth around me, soil in my hands,
the feel of it. I keep what is there alive,
thriving, loving back as they give back,
the aloe big enough to be part of any dream
for as long as I am here, bountiful, replete,
and in October, I will plant lavender again,
an antibiotic, small purple flowers,
exceptional—they keep evil away,
and are a spiritual healer, drawing the bees,
collecting light. I look at them longer
than I mean because I can’t look away.
All of it simply loveliness with staying power,
easy to emulate the best no matter what
else is offered. This is how I root myself
again and again, petals and blossoms,
what is enriched, comes back, no stopping
what works, feeds the heart and the spirit,
renewing everything in my path
no matter what happens, no matter who
leaves, the garden comes back.
Charlene Langfur is an LGBTQ and green writer, an organic gardener, a rescued dog advocate, a Syracuse University Graduate Writing Fellow and her most recent publications include a series of poems in Weber–The Contemporary West and The North Dakota Quarterly and an essay in The Smartset Magazine.