Diane’s garden

poem_dianes_garden_oils
Diane’s garden photoart – © Laura Granby 2017

More than ever it began as a love of labour
filling the gaping gap of a gardener
a happenstance just then when
I’d lost another kind of ardour

“Please do what you can with it” she’d asked
and left the struggling courtyard
in hands itching to tackle the sorry sward
laid in shady barren strips shrivelling and harassed

dug over for the winter, two queen Bumbles dethroned
their clumsy, rude awakening a timely reprimand
the garden’s neither outdoor room nor making claim to land
more or less just nature’s acre, tamer and de-boned

scourge for Eden dreamers is any barren scum
I soon learned to eat those earthy words of toilers gone before
digging deep where worms had long abandoned plans to underscore
cast chicken sh*t and topsoiled up so roots could overcome

patterns laid out clearly in a two-tiered polygon
corners cut in semi curves were softened out with spillage
brick edged borders fluffed with pride in bustling foliage
‘when space is small, grow bigger still’ – a maxim to expand upon

the marble tiled Potagerie is tiered in chorus lines
featuring every season the latest plant events
and walled from side-to-side with scrambling, rambling precedents
jasmines for the courtyard – perfume caught on vines

a rangy sycamore next-door killed off lavender schemes
stretched out leggy salvias, held daisies by the throat
forsaking flowery fancy plans I finally re-wrote
in suitable shades of umbrous green and pallid pink and creams

gravel lies where the toughest blade could never cut above
honey bees mine head first here in minute moisture chambers
seedlings find a foothold without the need for labour
cranesbill and campanula, spurge and fey foxglove

gardening is and ever was a progressive work of constancy
for now the place is in my hands and when I’ve moved away
the next in line will no doubt put their own plans into play
over years of loving labour in this borrowed territory

Dedicated to Diane so that she can stay in touch with the Courtyard Garden wherever she is in her travels and prompted by Mindlovemisery’s Saturday Mix: Garden. Also linking up with others versifiers in the Poetry Pantry:

I am struggling to keep up with commenting as I broke my left arm on Friday and the plaster cast is cumbersome. Patience is required!

28 comments

  1. Oh no sending healing wishes to you….I know how you feel so don’t overdo it my friend….I have learned the hard way. What a fabulous poem Laura….I could see the garden and feel the labor of love and sweat with each stanza…and the last lines summed it up beautifully,

    ‘gardening is and ever was a progressive work of constancy
    for now the place is in my hands and when I’ve moved away
    the next in line will no doubt put their own plans into play
    over years of loving labour in this borrowed territory’

    That is how we leave our gardens…they transform with each new set of hands! And my what a metaphor for life….always changing, transforming!

    Like

  2. I am so sorry to hear about your arm, Laura. I hope it heals soon and that the pain isn’t too much. Sending love and prayers your way. This is a beautiful poem.. one that makes me fall in love with gardening all over again especially; “gravel lies where the toughest blade could never cut above
    honey bees mine head first here in minute moisture chambers” is such a powerful image!

    Like

  3. From your poem I can really picture “Diane’s garden.” You have shown, with beautiful detail, that gardening is a labor of love. So sorry about your arm, Laura. Hope it heals well & soon.

    Like

  4. Dont worry about commenting, kiddo, just rest and heal…………I am so sorry you broke your arm – hopefully not gardening! I enjoyed this gardening poem. Can just imagine the relish with which you began to set it to rights……..I did love gardening in my day.

    Like

  5. This poem is packed tighter than a bouquet and it is alive.
    I was happy for this moment especially: “forsaking flowery fancy plans I finally re-wrote
    in suitable shades of umbrous green and pallid pink and creams”

    Like

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