“My Grandfather’s Garden” — Caldwell Holden ’17

It is in the field of golden clusters, rippling in the wind,
that I see one smart purple weed smirking at me,
like the blood on Queen Anne’s lace,
but bleeding out and over the whole world’s grace.

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At the end of the goldenrod sit the walnut trees,
drooping with their load of rough fruit,
which also rolls by their knees,
among the always three leafed clover.


A ladder used to stretch into the canopy,
far above my short young head,
held by my grandfather’s old hands,
as he shook the world above.


I’ve been running lost,
through thick bunches of cattails,
their ornery brown tops scraping my skin,
through bunches of black eyed Susan,
whose prickly dark gaze would chastise me for my ambition.


And now that I’m back to the flowers I know,
their image has been distorted,
and the weeds are beginning to overgrow my memories.


The sun’s now gone, the golden fields turned black,
so I go back to running unfamiliar paths,
where thorns and barren branches cut me raw.