Love / Poetry / Poets

A Summer Garden Poem for the Coldest Days by Elisha Stam

This walk, is a summer evening walk

through waylaid gardens.

I am sneaky. I glean with stealth in the coming night.

Stepping on thirsty plants, I crush the blooming basil.

I can smell everything. I can see red tomatoes.

I use my knife, against my thumb

and clip off some dill.

This dill flower is a scented firework

going off under my nose.

Then I was walking home with a bag of loot,

heavy, in the crooks of my arms.

I was dirty and grimy passing the hipsters at the WestTown pub.

Darkness had almost settled.

I felt lost in the dusk, peering at the black clouds of humidity.

Neither dusk nor storm could hide the pink lines

of lightning up ahead.

I felt like celebrating, even though you weren’t there.

Dill, tomatoes, a few curly cukes.

I am surviving summer and living underneath

the heat all around, even on hot jars trying to cool,

in a kitchen that is heavy with preservation of things you planted.

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8 thoughts on “A Summer Garden Poem for the Coldest Days by Elisha Stam

  1. This is great, Elisha. I am enjoying reading this because I know the garden you were visiting and the roads you were walking. 🙂

    I think your use of details is excellent; I think all five senses really come through here but touch and smell are the most tangible to me.

    I especially like these verses:

    “I use my knife, against my thumb

    and clip off some dill.

    This dill flower is a scented firework

    going off under my nose.”

    And these:

    “am surviving summer and living underneath

    the heat all around, even on hot jars trying to cool,

    in a kitchen that is heavy with preservation of things you planted.”

    All of this feels very real and close at hand, even in February.

  2. Pingback: A Summer Garden Poem for the Coldest Days by Elisha Stam « Past Page Ten

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