Secateurs maintain order, give shape
To long held beliefs in need of pruning.
Between the bee balm and butterfly weed
the perennial ballet struggles to maintain balance.

Axons and meristems mix in his mind.
He remembers the rudbeckia
Though he’s forgotten the black eyed Susan,
No matter now August will have its season.

Nature’s whims he suffers and exploits,
Taming the runner, sorting the cotyledons.
Memories he grafts onto old rootstock
Embellishments of a half forgotten past.

He speaks in floral parables at length.
Out of nature he defines a garden.
After forty years he stares into her face
And wonders if he ever knew her at all.

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