May 29, 2013

Miss Hortense, in the garden, come to straighten
the trellis stakes for the grapes, searched instead
for weevils deep in the weeds. They were tiny
and scary, like emissaries from a distant moon,
and far too daunting for this damsel and
this daughter of a pastor. Weevils weave desire
into the fabric of our thoughts. Every child knows that.
They climbed among her petticoats much like
they would crawl under leaves to escape the heat—
much like Ganymede, the boy lover, not the moon,
who brought wine to her bower, then crept away and disappeared
into the wind. The sun was hot and still.
Miss Hortense, a menace to the sentence,
rose and roared, apprentice to a May day.


3 Responses to “Weevil”

  1. Anna Mark Says:


  2. extrasimile Says:

    Thanks Anna. I’ve been a little scattered lately–but your reading of the poem is pretty much dead on. Does she scream at the end? Well, maybe…

  3. Anna Mark Says:

    Well, being the first to leave a comment on one of your poems, Jim, is something that I usually avoid ; ) But you’re gracious. Miss Hortense goes into a garden. A garden is a place where green is all around and growth. A symbol of purity (and in this case of wine and romance and hints of the youth who appears later). The first thing she could do is straighten the stakes, foster the growth, prepare the grapes to thrive. But instead she searches for evil weevils come to damage the crops and the pure fabric of her thoughts. Ah, desire, crawling up her petticoats like a boy lover (Ganymede). The poem ends with her scream. The garden left untended. I enjoyed the rhythm and flow of your words and the whole poem is such an intriguing snapshot of a moment when a woman searches for the very thing she becomes overwhelmed with, in the end. She knew the weevils were there, so she knew her fear from the start, but searched anyway. Wow. I really enjoyed this poem.

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