IN ORDINARY TIME

In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life:  It goes on.   Robert Frost

Year after year we await forsythia,

to see brilliant yellow

florets like tiny fireworks. I spy

peony’s purple velvet

fronds in quiet explosion.

But since I’ve been alive

there’s been a back story that competes

with each emergent spring.

A black story that drains color from the sky.

(Do you know the story

about the accidents, the nuclear accidents?)

 Soon I expect to see day lily, lilac,

viburnum’s miniature burgeoning bouquets

flourish.

The story also begins

in New Mexico, nineteen forty-five

then Greenland

Britain

Mexico

the Soviet Union and Japan,

then Baneberry at Yucca Flat

Morocco

and Three Mile Island

Chernobyl

Canada

and Zaragoza Spain,

Costa Rica

India

and Tokaimura Japan

Panama, Thailand,

Fukushima

 

Ordinarily it’s true, crocus, jonquil and quince quietly

arrive      live      flourish

no accident life

goes on…

ordinarily that’s true.

 

Jean Cassidy,  2004

Photo Credit: David Clode

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