Days of planting seeds gave
her the courage to continue in peace.
Drenched in heat or storm, she
managed to plant.

She always had flower gardens,
wherever she lived, the air that
filled her lungs, the dirt that filled
her nails.

The neighborhood girls called her
“the flower lady” and she loved that
they noticed the rows of zinnia and
spikes of gladiolus.

Creeping phlox cascaded down the
edge of the rock garden, her years
measured in floral bounty. They shared

She wore a shawl of lantana,
draped across her shoulders
now bent with age. Hummingbirds
flocked to her magic in the dance.

A wreath of echinacea
circled her head. Rings of violets
wrapped her fingers. Lavender
scented her body.

Garden phlox was a gift from a
distant lover, spreading serendipitously,
a feast, glistening in the August sun,
waiting for visitors.