Late August Garden

Jill Bialosky

Beds overgrown; daisies dead-headed,

petunias long given up their flower.

Purple bursts of hydrangea hang heavy

in torment. Soon they’ll shed their brittle

bonnets. Our prized lavender’s lost her sweet

musky scent. Sea grasses, wild, unhinged, blow

this way and that like crazy, deluded

lovers. Memory’s a burden. Regret

a scam. Grasshoppers destroyed our hostas.

Why do I care? All summer I tended

the garden of the soon-to-be dead.

Haven’t I done enough? Maybe I belong

in the republic of sin. Come join me.

Isn’t it grand, death’s perverse deceiving sham?

Jill Bialosky is the author of five books of poetry, including Asylum. Her most recent novel is The Deceptions. She is the author of History of a Suicide and Poetry Will Save Your Life and is an executive editor at W. W. Norton & Company.
Originally published:
February 8, 2023


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