Gabriel Welsch

A Gardener’s Prayer

Ice glazes the spines of crocus leaves
a whorl of grass
like tufts of glass. Cold’s chime
soothes this place—
where winter’s last grip
of the long cold
afterward feels as though it went
quickly, a whisper
in a darkened train, while I rode
between stops unsure
I heard it until days later
it clattered through my dreams
toward morning with certainty.
I seldom need
reminding that I’ll die— the sun
each day replays that truth.
The gritty nature of how
lives as a breath
worrying my ear. Amid crocus leaves
I dream a quiet end. May it be
as easy for me as a glaze of ice about
my leaves, a slick
of water to seal my eyes,
a cloud’s weight to push me back to earth.

Gabriel Welsch
A Gardener’s Prayer was first published in 5AM, Fall 2003.
Poem, copyright © 2003 by Gabriel Welsch
Appearing on From the Fishouse with permission
Audio file, copyright © 2005, From the Fishouse