In the garden, I am

the number one helper


he’s the vegetable veteran,

hands blending into the soil.

My fingers clumsy

and pale, the onion bulb to

his roots. He follows,

instructing and inspecting

with as many “that a girls”

as beans in my bucket;

the weight driving the handle

deeper into my palm.

When he opens a pea pod,

with hands that will never be clean,

I don’t hesitate.

“Everyone eats dirt in their

lives. It’s good for you.”



The most limpid love I’ve ever been able
was wasted at twelve years old.
I held your hand once during Mass,
but every other interaction
has been me making a fool
of myself. I imagined you
blameless these past twenty years–
I cried when you never returned.

A Valentine remembered, small compliments recorded.
‘Just maybe he did’ always held in my heart.

Turns out, I was wrong and should never
have asked. There was never a chance
you liked me back then and you’re still
too considerate to say.

z9 (2)