After Average Last Frost

The packet of beans said

“sow after average last frost”

which implies that an April

freeze is nothing to fret about

since the average frost ended

as March began, so into the

bed they went, snugged in

the soft thawed soil.

One day shy of ten, the fleshy

cotyledons shouldered the dirt

aside , revealing tips of first

leaves tasting the air like the

tongues of snakes, only green.

Also stirred were the beds of

slugs whose slick spawn found

the sprouts within easy reach,

and one day shy of twelve

the garden was gone.

The packet of beans warns of

the cold yet says naught of the

peril of growing nor of the ache

of promise devoured when nothing

remains but the beckoning soil,

soft and willing and warm.

© dana hughes 7.7.15

One thought on “After Average Last Frost

  1. Dana, once again you capture a range of emotions in a few tight turns of phrase. Hope, joy, loss, grief, resignation… the range of emotions that dominate life are here in these lines about bean sprouts. That’s good poetry. “Cotyledons”–I love that word! and the image of the emergent leaves flickering like snake tongues. So simple, so calm, so deep. Thanks again, my friend.

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