A desperate thing, appearing now beneath my trees with salted bones, inflated lungs and iced up veins. It’s mouth, a rotting apple from my trees. It’s belly part of some great tree that had been felled. Part of my trees. You must be gone - I said. For I would close my garden up this night. My trees, my lawns, they must be left in peace. It’s bending now to scoop the fruit it’s hunger, burning scrolls across my turf. My part of earth. Decaying apples, uncollected from my trees will see my blackbirds thrive till spring arrives. The smug survival of my sheltered space. My dream, I said, this garden where no clumsy footsteps tread. The rose, the bluebell and the ‘maids’ at new year’s snow. Only what I like will grow! My cleanliness out runs the pests. My purity of petals, in the sun. God may scowl at me and say where are the wasps, the slugs and snails today? Eden, Gethsemane, Golgotha and sweet Paradise I have four gardens and you want one to yourself? My tanks are filled. My super soakers armed with gas and lime. My trees in peace, my lawns, still undefiled.
Lois Hambleton is from Birmingham UK. Her work in inner city adult education has greatly influenced her writing. Her daughter’s recovery from alcoholism has inspired poems included in two addiction anthologies – A Wild and Precious Life (Unbound) & Despite Knowing (Fore Street Press). She has also been published with Poetry Bus Magazine, Indigo Dreams, Culture Matters Co-Operative Ltd, Creative Ink, The Madrigal Press, Transcendent Zero Press & Last Stanza Poetry Journal.