On the first spring day of prolonged clear sunshine

she mows the lawns, weeds the paths, hoes the borders,

counts the figs, admires the honesty,

tends the low lavender hedge – then relaxes

on a lounger in front of the gazebo,

framed by clematis and magnolia blooms.


She sleeps, safe in the garden’s ivy clad

chambers – the alfresco rooms she has made

from soil ravaged by lime and gravel.

If she lies too long she will catch the sun –

a curious, promethean turn of phrase

yet right for a gardener who has acquired

from the air itself wild strawberries,

welsh poppies, common columbine, even

honesty. Perhaps I should not let her sleep –

but waking her seems always an intrusion

into the private solitude of dreams.


We have been in love for more than fifty years –

doppelgänger, alter ego; boxing hare,

comedy partner; devil’s advocate,

critical friend; anxiety’s balm, pearl

irritant; good companion, turtle dove.

She stirs – wakened, no doubt, by that slow passion

of plants – before I can rouse her with a kiss,

like any common or garden prince or frog.




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  1. #1 by Keith Johnson - August 24th, 2016 at 09:29

    Absolutely beautiful.

  2. #2 by Ian Craine - August 24th, 2016 at 10:40

    What a beautiful love song to Topsy that is, David.

  3. #3 by Howard Gardener - August 24th, 2016 at 11:38

    Excellent – somehow understated and yet rich with detail at the same time. Many congratulations to you both.

  4. #4 by Catherine Reynolds - August 25th, 2016 at 18:32

    What a beautiful way of expressing your love for the reclining gardener. Cx

  5. #5 by Theresa Brady - August 28th, 2016 at 17:38

    How beautiful. X

  6. #6 by Mary Clark - August 29th, 2016 at 20:28

    This is one of the best love poems I’ve ever read.

  7. #7 by Mike and Pat Rogerson - September 16th, 2016 at 19:56

    You paint a beautiful picture with your palette of words.

  8. #8 by Ashen Venema - September 18th, 2017 at 13:03

    Lovely and touching present to a loved one.
    I was lead back to this poem while exploring Mary Clark’s website.

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