What Is Green in Me
by Francesca Bell

—Denise Levertov

Evenings, I sit alone

and watch my garden

crowd and tangle.

Plums form, green and small,

hard enough to break a window.

They will ripen into sweetness

but won’t lose their astringent origins.

Beyond them, brightness flares

on the pomegranate bush

and will become something

to be trampled, or fruits to pick

when this year turns away.

The insides will be jeweled,

seeds so deeply red, they’re nearly black.

How many flowers drop,

brown and wasted, before one fruit

manages to form?

Wild poppies wander, garish

and unbidden, up my hillside,

and verbascum scatters from plants

placed carefully and long ago.

Soon, green spires will rise

and their tiny blossoms blink open,

glowing faint and yellow,

here and there against the dark.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 17, Issue 2.

Francesca BellFrancesca Bell’s poetry appears in many journals, including New Ohio Review, North American Review, PANK, Poetry Northwest, Prairie Schooner, River Styx, and Zone 3. She has been nominated eight times for the Pushcart Prize and once for Best of the Net. She won the 2014 Neil Postman Award for Metaphor from Rattle.

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