In “The Gleaners”

THE GLEANERS

(after Roethke and Millet)

For thirty years I’ve watched them stoop,

Fred and Ann, waist-deep in green,

deadheading flowers

after their first blooming.

 

No wheat fields cleaned by hand this time

but the garden across Dexter Ave.

prepared  at the cusp of summer

for its next extravagance.

 

They clip the plants below their seedpods

forcing a generosity of display that stops me,

for the pleasure and perfume of it,

all season long.

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