Wise Poets – Linda Pastan – The Gardener

Linda Pastan (May 27, 1932 -)

He’s out rescuing his fallen hollies
after the renegade snowstorm,
sawing their wounded limbs off
quite mercilessly (I think of the scene
in “Kings Row,” the young soldier waking
to find his legs gone).
He’s tying up young bamboo—
their delicate tresses litter the driveway—
shovelling a door through the snow
to free the imprisoned azaleas.
I half expect him to tend his trees
with aspirin and soup, the gardener
who finds in destruction
the very reason to carry on;
who would look at the ruins
of Eden and tell the hovering angel
to put down his sword,
there was work to be done.

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