The fourth month that I am on Clomiphene, you suggest
we grow vegetables, with this funny look, like I only hear
half of what you want to say. You have given that look
so many times in the past four months.
Projects emerge out out of the quiet spaces between us
like evening primrose, waiting to be seen. You ask,
this time, to raise vegetables because we buy too many
tomatoes, and because, I think, you want to keep me busy.
We we choose a Sunday, because Sundays are the hardest
for some reason. Something about tradition and ritual
makes us want to have someone to teach, to feel
like our stories aren’t our own anymore, like ingredients
for a meal only we can cook. These plants, you say,
will be the first course. Your hands in the dirt, sun
in your face, I see the weary man inside, a ragged
tree after a storm, and I wonder what I must look like.
On a Sunday, in June, we plant tomatoes. We write,
“Sweet Banana Peppers” on popsicle sticks and sink
them into the soil. We water zucchini, pluck mint,
let it sit on our tongues. And once we are good
and dirty, tired, and sunburnt, we rest. We survey
the things we have made with our four hands. We let
the backyard settle into summer dusk, and I know
you are trying to teach me that I can make things grow.