‘Floralscapes’ by Emily Sweet

The Keeper of Calla Lilies

She grows into the garden she tends,
Wind streaming through her hair.
Bluebells stirring in response,
Startled by the sudden gust,
Rubbing together in reassurance.

Harnessing the rush of the hose,
Gnarled hands,
Receiving cold refuge from the tired sun,
Legs sturdy as sunflower stocks.

Haphazard Hair,
Toppling as wild leaves,
Springing from a hedge of neglect,
She abandons the bush for a flower plot,
Spiking her hair as a guilty tribute,
A reminder of sprouts once shaped.

Cala lilies clamor,
Pale petals brush,
Softer than a tender lover’s touch
Poppies blush red in jealousy
Stems sway
Brittle seeds cluster
An escalating envy
The weather warms their fire

She sits amidst the outrage
Her cheeks flush with hope
Dirt clumps to her clothes
Not wanting to leave her side
In return
For housing grains of ground
She is given garden wisdom.

Powerful as a tree trunk
Rooted in gentle insight
She sprinkles spring water
Quelling parched spirits
Rivalries depart
Rising as warm steam
Daisies reach out in thanks
Vines overlap
As seamlessly as conjoined notes
Words softly rustle from her lips
Shivering in her throat before breaking into air.

“My vibrant flowers float in my mind,
Even as the moon distorts their shades,
With my garden I am entwined,
So as the world around me fades,
With my marigolds outside, with what shall I fill my head?
I could wind up my mind like ivy,
But I end up in a garden of wonders instead.”


Life Beneath His Sole

My dream house.
Full of flowers,
Devoid of flies.
Filled with laughter,
Starved of lies.

Vines hug the sandy walls
Crawling slowly, carefully.
Flat feet some call leaves
Pitter patter protectively

The neighborhood watch comes to town,
Peering eyes and rules abound
These weeds adorning your fence,
Don’t look appealing for potential residents

The dandelion heads,
Held high and true,
Have supported me long before you.

Pull them up, they did say,
Or our new gardener will head your way

I spied a man of the straggler sort,
The gardener tromping in.
He’s victim
To the beck and call of nosey neighbors.
He’s cloaked
By wisps of dawn
The grim reaper of dandelions

The man they sent to uproot my weeds,
Didn’t have the pleasure of witnessing their fruition from seeds.
The sprouts added color to snow covered ground,
Telling me that hope could always be found.
Reaching heavenward, they found the sun
Turning yellow to match its shade
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

He began to tug, pull and huff,
Floral leaves fell from their communal centers.
The petals settle in sordid soil
By the worms they are eagerly engulfed
Yellow splashes of sunshine:
Dandelions fashioned from their ancient idol, sun,
Were trampled under cheap plastic work boots.

Life decays fast
human-made waste is built to last
Decades after my dandelions disappear
Those repulsive work boots will still be here

What is more of value…
A fleeting wonder or a lasting disgrace?
Moments of life are encapsulated in time
Through the gaze of my hapless dandelions
So pure and innocent
Hardly lasting as long as I.
When they are old and gray,
In one breath I can blow them away.
My exhale scatters their seeds,
Sending future generations into the breeze.
Their life has passed us by.

Yet long after I am dead,
When in the casket they lay my head,
The plastic in the gardener’s boots will outlive me,
For years after I’ve been laid peacefully.
My dandelion friends,
Once with a complexion of cheer,
Are dust in synthetic treads
The device with which they met their demise,
The murder weapon.
These boots survive my cries.

The shoes protected the gardener’s feet
Ensuring it would be over soon,
As he snuck to my gate at dawn
Removing the “weeds” at last

Beautify the neighborhood
Increase the wealth, by any means
Shrugging as the chainsaws scream
We need more things and less of the living!

But my so-called weeds still loved me,
They held firm in the ground
Wanting to stand tall.
Live beauties,
Playing tug a war for my love,
With a sigh they gave way to the gardener’s glove
Hands skilled in the art of removing life
Clumps of their bodies lay still
Upon the newly-paved road
Laid in the breeze to ease the journey of new tires
Enticing new buyers
Buy, buy, bye.

Goodbye to my yellow friends,
Who now lay flat,
My sunshine trampled.

A streetlamp was soon erected
See, a better bet than weeds
But all I see are the dark shadows he leaves
Casting pale yellows into darkness
No cheery bright hues
But the mosquitos were sure enthused
He’s the sun’s sickly rival,

He rudely intrudes through a bare window,
Shining his light where he’s not welcome
Peeking through my eyelids
Prodding me to react
Reminiscent of the street-wide sea
Of clipped lawns,
Drenched in a shade of chemical green.
Prime pickings for a potential purchaser
Snuffed out,
Like my hopeful dandelions,
Was the light inside of me
And my hope for a world joined in serendipity.

EMILY SWEET is an award-winning poet. She enjoys writing articles and has most recently been published in Reader’s Digest and Goodlife Fitness Magazine. Emily is an English and Philosophy student at York University who wishes to be a teacher. Her love of nature, which enhances her appreciation for life, coaxes her to create.

Copyright © 2019 by Emily Sweet. All rights reserved.