Enter Home Planet News Poetry of Issue #6                         Page 6
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REMEMBERING THE GARDEN

The garden was beyond
the last row of pine
maybe half a basketball court of sloping land
flooded in the spring
even before Mom put out the mums
and herb pots or planted her flowers
along the verge of the house
dad would call our neighbor
old Mr. Barrows
to come with his wheezing yellow Chalmers
to plow and disc
every year we’d pick the rocks that grew there

Though we all worked it
everyone knew it was Dad’s
it was his on his hands and knees
his all summer after work
singing softly a song
I don’t remember or
making small unintelligible noises
his as he went pulling weeds
tossing rocks

some of what he said comes back
I still remember
even now:

plant garlic by the full moon
nearest Columbus Day
harvest in spring
after the first green
shoots of horseradish appear above the snow

plant nothing else til
after Memorial Day
hang the garlic
in onion bags from the cellar rafters
dark and cool

asparagus comes first
pick it before it flowers

tomatoes come in the thick of summer
and sweet corn
both so plentiful people would give them away
hang it in bags
on your door

August the kitchen would be busy
mom canning and freezing
making catsup sauce and what she called chili
somehow this fall activity is
mixed with springtime
when dad would pull the horseradish
grind and prepare it

hot and bitter
as tears


  Gregg Weatherby