“Gardens” by Andrew DeBella


I plunged my shovel into bare ground

One foot stomping its edge, 

Tearing dirt like paper  

with needle-like precision

My garden was full;

I was careful to ration in the droughts

Watched the precipitation, tracking

Weather like a junior storm chaser, giddy

in my accuracy of the forecast.

The petrichor soothed me,  

Dry earth absorbing June’s flash floods

Clay-chipped soil

Clobbered with the moisture of summer,

The smell of rain at night. 


In the morning leaves 

Glide in velvet across my palm,

Imprinting the coarse press on my fingertips,

Leaving watery residue in my hand

I remember holding the

Clusters of dirt, sinking my naked feet in mud

A little here and there; yes, that was it.

Andrew DeBella is a creative writing teacher in Oklahoma.

Photo by Neslihan Gunaydin on Unsplash

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