That the world has many troubles,
Injustices perpetrated upon the defenseless
While benefices adorn the unworthy and corrupt,
Is not lost upon me.
The cacophony of death, hunger, despair, and repression
Does not go unnoticed.
But for a little it recedes.
Here, beneath the Vitex trees, bees sway in the honeyed air of a July afternoon.
Their tiny legs clinging to the flames of blue flowers.
They seek their work among the lavender blossoms by the back door
Or among the pink and purple spires of Veronica.
In the dense fall of light, lilies turn faces cupped in open welcome
To beguile with their pollen laden stamens
All the winged things into their trumpeted recesses.
While echinacea flowers nod like country women in their Sunday hats, complete with golden songbirds, perched and motionless upon the brims.
Buddleia, shaded palest pink or royal purple. bend gently beneath the mass of brightly powdered wings.
A fluttering pause, a delicate feast
For fritillaries–swallowtails and monarchs, a brilliant blue whose name I never caught.
Birds of every variety fill the air with their concerns
Mr. Towhee awaiting his daily bath,
Mrs. Towhee busy building a nest of single pine straws, grasses, a discarded piece of bailing twine.
Cardinals busy themselves calling “Purdy Purdy Purdy” to each other.
While finches investigate the hanging begonias
For exotic delicacies on the half shell.
The squirrels greedily vacuum up the black oil sunflower seeds
Put out for the benefit of birds
And the dog plays her afternoon game of chance
With the enormous rabbit who lives in the forsythia hedge.
He has demonstrated a taste for hostas and impatiens, much to my mother’s dismay.
There is a deep sort of peace in the dapple shade of the river birch
Resting on the brow of a small hill
And appreciating the way a vague breeze stirs the sweat of work to coolness.
How it sings in the sixty foot trees that cup this Universe unmarked
By distant wars, nearby greeds, and human wrongness of every shade and proximity between.
This is the living work of peace, wrought in vines and blooms, thorns and wild-running hedges.
It is not that care is not freely given
To the woes of a world wound tight to bursting,
But an admission of smallness, and the need for everyone
To do what they can, with what they have, where they are.
If the world is to be saved, it will be in the way of blossoms, of small works and steady effort.
It will be the result of having eyes ready to see all that is possible and yet to come.