has grown old,
with cane and slippers
shuffling icy fingers turning
the calendar to December.
His beard echoing the white
ground beneath, a decisive
crunch of sycamore leaves, coarse
grass drenched in frost.
This year stands by watching the last
excavation, dahlias dug,
potatoes; sweet and Irish safely
stored, butternut lining the shelves.
This year is popping a button
of pride as plum tomatoes
filled basket after basket, gradually
ending up as a hundred quart jars of red.
Trying to remember it’s youthful days,
the year pictures the asparagus looking like
a forest of bamboo, teeth stained with blueberries,
and the smell of sweet corn boiling.
Patient the aging year watches vetch
and crimson clover roll to the moist
earth till the beds are sprouting cover
crop in the eleventh month.
Windy fingers wrap around dried pods,
the year’s final touch releases stick- like cosmos
seed, pushing pointy morning glory seed downward,
sending husks of faint orange marigold drifting.
Meanwhile humble squash seeds dry indoors,
Striped German tomatoes squeeze out their
mucous progeny that dry to a mere brown period,
hardly letting on their potential.
This year sits on its final month like an aging parent,
satisfied the seed box filling with carefully labeled packets,
content to hand this treasure over to the
that young upstart, the New Year.
Anne Maren-Hogan Anne gardens and writes in the South Toe Valley. she recently was awarded publication of her first chapbook The Farmer’s Wake.