Tending Ancient Marigolds...

Tending Ancient Marigolds...

A Poem by J. Hampton

Remnants of rust,ochre and violet cling to a patch of powder blue that imagined itself between the blanch of dirty aluminum sided trailers and broken down sundecks.

Paint white washed over rotted shingles and warped wooden railings

Shallow bursts of fall wind carry the odor of damp ground

and the tang of fireplace smoke from homes filled with warmth... laughter

todays and tomorrows


Nursing half-dead pot-bound marigolds ,I crane my sanity

Desperately seeking a drop of Summer's youth

ahhh to salvage one secret seedling of the time wasted pining for today

 I want to cry but chuckle and carefully settle into my broken chair, broken God and broken prayer

till the the lulling hiss of the oxygen tank is lost in the sound of raking across the way

 Dead leaves stick to the spot where oil leaked in my driveway month after procrastinated month

 I think about the hundred books I've read a hundred times stacked for tag sale.. then I remember Its November in New England and too late is just too late and tomorrow always comes

Todays become too slippery to hold

envying the neighbor raking leaves who  is as youngas I am old

...And I wave


Jewels of merlot,gold and sunburst fill the autum sky between charming old homes,

glowing like a postcard just for me

I thank God for relief from summer's heat

Scents of damp earth and joy waft downwind

leaves do a happy dance across the place the I just raked

I give up the task and smile

a hundred things to do tomorrow

can wait another hundred days

sitting on the corner of my steps planning ..what I'll write about tomorrow

all the while embracing the thought of rustic winter scenes and play

I could only capture the peace of the neighbor across the way

like his porch He's stood the test of time gathered wisdom of his days

tending ancient marigolds and solitude

how I envy him

To be at peace one day

I smile as he lifts his hand

.... and I return the wave


J.hampton bythewurd7@yahoo.com


"The LORD has mercy on those who respect him, as a father has mercy on his children. He knows how we were made; he remembers that we are dust. Human life is like grass; we grow like a flower in the field. After the wind blows, the flower is gone, and there is no sign of where it was. But the LORD's love for those who respect him continues forever and ever, and his goodness continues to their grandchildren "- Psalm 103:13-17

© 2013 J. Hampton

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This was amazing to read. Your descriptions used for both and the envious feeling of both sides makes me think of the wanting humans crave. I agree with the other reviewers, brilliantly done.

Posted 6 Months Ago

J. Hampton

6 Months Ago

I appreciate most of all,that you "got" it
and your time taken to drop kind words my way
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brilliant...not much more to say. Amen.

Posted 7 Years Ago

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This really is brilliant... from both angles!

Posted 8 Years Ago

Just beautiful.

Posted 8 Years Ago

I was a little lost at the starting over line. But your plan was soon made apparent and I was swept away in your brillinat words. Wonderful to see it from both sides of the street.

Posted 8 Years Ago

The imagery in this is absolutely breathtaking.
Very very well done.

Posted 8 Years Ago

I love watercolors and this poem would be one if it were a painting. Soft washes and subtle undertones fill your words. The descriptions are tints and hues of many colors. I love the style and tempo. You have talent.

Posted 8 Years Ago

Oh my my my,

J, I see now your love of color. This poem screams color. If not for the brief mention of New England, that could easily have described a number of places in the south. I was mesmerized from the first stanza, and not disappointed. You held my interest all the way to the end, your piece doesn't just describe a pot of marigolds, it digs beneath the surface and brings in another element altogether. I feel as though I am there. I take it that was what you were going for all along. Excellent.


Posted 8 Years Ago

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8 Reviews
Added on November 1, 2009
Last Updated on March 30, 2013

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