It was still a good crop this year

It’s the mighty lens flare off the birches,
the snap-roots hanging low and brave over the bank. Hope
makes eager farms of us. Like we are the starflower,
the nettle and horsetail, the burn-fists of grounds from the drain.
On bucket mornings we take to our gardens,
offer look how they’re coming along.
As if the family pictures in the hall
have not grown wider apart, as if our gaping barn door looks
no less amazed these days. I ask Mother how she
keeps it up out here all alone and she points to
the firestalk planted the year I was born; notes that without
permission, it is now throat high. It makes her feel
small as the carrying bones of either hip,
though grateful to be the source of something. Lemon hope,
she might call that particular bush,
as though there were ever another kind.


Wendy Neale
Copyright © 2014  

Wendy Neale Merry is a poet from California. Her writing has appeared at Hobart, Nano Fiction, Spork, Dossier Journal, Stone Highway Review, and others. She lives in downtown Manhattan with her family where she freelances as an art director for feature film campaigns. Read more of her work at

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