Crimsoned With Joy

The Red Carpet Treatment at The Farm

And a bird overhead sang Follow,

And a bird to the right sang Here;

And the arch of the leaves was hollow,

And the meaning of May was clear.

Algernon Charles Swinburne


by Amy Lowell

Life is a stream
On which we strew
Petal by petal the flower of our heart;
The end lost in dream,
They float past our view,
We only watch their glad, early start.

Freighted with hope,
Crimsoned with joy,
We scatter the leaves of our opening rose;
Their widening scope,
Their distant employ,
We never shall know. And the stream as it flows
Sweeps them away,
Each one is gone
Ever beyond into infinite ways.
We alone stay
While years hurry on,
The flower fared forth, though its fragrance still stays.


After a long winter, there is something magical with the speed with which Minnesota transforms from brown to green.   Two weeks ago I would have bet that the crab apple trees would not be blooming by Mother’s Day and then, viola, magic happens.   All the fruit trees burst out in blossom, the linden’s perfume places you would never expect and in general I pinch myself every morning in how beautiful it is in May in Minnesota.   All of the fruit trees I planted this year came through the drought and then the record snowfall.  They are ready to grow this year.  May in Minnesota is darn near perfect, perfect temperatures, first half virtually no mosquitoes and every day a new flower blooming in the yard.   The lilacs will be up next, then the iris, then on and on.    


Smell is the Last Memory To Go

by Fatimah Asghar 
on my block, a gate
on my block, a tree smelling
of citrus & jasmine that knocks
me back into the arms of my dead
mother. i ask Ross how can a tree
be both jasmine & orange, on my block
my neighbors put up gates & stare
don’t like to share, on my block
a tree I can’t see, but can smell
a tree that can’t be both but is
on my block, my mother’s skirt twirls
& all i smell is her ghost, perfume
on my block, a fallen orange
smashed into sidewalk
its blood pulped on asphalt on my
block, Jordan hands me a jasmine
by the time i get home
all its petals are gone