Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Stokes Aster

At Morningstar in August
potted perennials have strewn
roots beyond their containers
and clutch at burlap, other plants,
or the weedy ground below.
I browse among trees grown so tall
still in their large plastic pots
you’d need a crane to move them.

Honeybees simper in flowers,
wallowing in sweets. Their lives,
compromised by pesticides, fungus,
and long dull winters, seem useful
but too monastic to excite me
into fits of figurative language.
They’re working only a few yards
from their hives, white cubes propped
on legs above the reach of dogs—
three goldens and an aging mutt—
that follow me step by step
through the aisles of straining flowers.

Stokes aster stops me. Its flowers
attain a shimmering deep blue
that locks my gaze and stuns me.
I could grow old watching these blossoms
bask in their private glory,
but the dogs nudge me along
to the orchard where brown pears ripen
like swollen leather knuckles
in a dazzle of ranting bees.