from Forrest Fest - Third Place - Adult Poetry - 2005

Pulling Weeds

I push my hands into the dirt
look for a solution and
find only tangled roots and
worms between my fingers.

I bury my anger deep
hoping it will bloom orchids.
Or at least an annual
that might return.

I pull weeds.
Sort the good stock
from the bad.
Rake the ground
clear of debris.
Turn the dirt fresh
give it the love it never had.

I wait to see my hopes
push through and stand tall.
The sun Texas hot burns the ground dead.
I water, and wait.

Pale and malformed they emerge.
Weeds all of them.

I leave the ground cracked dry,
watering can empty.

It’s been too long a day.

I pull the last weed
and leave the rest
to their ruins.