I hear them calling me to leave this place and drive to town,
To listen to their eager words and laughter, to hear the news
Of who did what and when and to whom it was done and why.
I can almost hear their words, tumbling over each other in excitement,
their laughter ringing out like the bells in the church tower,
Singing over and over, “Come! Come and join us!
Hear what we have to say! Tell us your news!”
I almost give in to the temptation to wash my garden-dirty hands,
Sleek back my hair and shed my work-worn jeans,
But I resist.
There are chokeholds of bindweed to remove from the lilies,
And the petunias need watering. Tiny weeds sprout between
The parsley and dill and the dogs have scattered the mulch
That beds the lavender. I plod on
with my watering cans and dirty hands, and for a moment
settle on my haunches to listen to another song—
The honeybees working the persimmon bloom above my head,
The bumbling bee on the pink spirea, and the clatter of my husband’s tools
As he repairs, once again, the ailing mower.
The din from town disappears; I hear the slosh of water
falling on thirsty ground, and in my head the words of this poem
Find their timid way.