Monday Morning You Sure Look Fine

Mary, Mary
by Dodie Meeks

Outside the window of my room
Big creamy plates of bloom
Are spilling smoky seeds.
The bees are slurping out there
Dazed in hundred proof magnolia.
Leathery petals slide
Into a jungle rot
Alive, alive-oh.

Up and down the block
The neighbors' pyracantha
Is clipped formica neat
But my garden
That they can hardly stand
Is all elbows and knees.

Salvia slavering down the walk
Ivy shinnying up the stalks
Of three kinds of anemone
Gone berserk
As anemone can
Each stem
Erupting into ten.

That hospital gift gardenia
We brought home
To give a decent burial
Is pop-corned over with bloom
Enough for a funeral or two
Crowding a candelabra of lilies
Budded so aching tight
It hurts to look.

Those roses that you sent
Are, believe me, thorny healthy
Clawing through whatever this is
Veined with tattered blue
On international orange.

And I know I never
Put in this goofy stand of garlic.
That sad young wandering priest
We let sleep on the sofa
Was a fussy eater.
These might be the kernels
He threw out.

Taking on the mint.
Well. You know mint.
Smells like a Christmas candy cane
Has the soul of a virus.
They said to contain it
But don't tell me
What to do with my darn mint.

So here's a carpet of that.
Too thick to get a grip on
But for a leaf or two, for tea.
And here come some caladium
Unfurling burgundy veined with green
Vulgar as kisses blown from curbs.
The brass section.
Blaring through the violets. Aren't they
Supposed to come back small?

Where you are, in London,
Crocuses peek through snow.
In Holland the tulips are marching along
Row on proper row.
Like ads for laundry soap.
But they have that purple scent.
It's illegal to let poppies grow
In Greece, but they do anyway
On hairy stems
Through rock
Gasping for a breath of mist.

Boy. It's moist here all the time.
I can stand in the center of my house
And feel my garden buzz and seethe
Like mother
Yanking on a sequined blouse.
To teach in the Methodist Sunday school
Saying whee. Whoop de doo, Jim.
Whoop de doo. It's just the gypsy in me.

Dodie Meeks


  1. oh what a wonderful poem, so full of life and colour and movement and breath!! I adore it! Thank you for sharing it, really really lovely :)

  2. I agree with sweetmango; I had all sorts of wonderful visualizations while reading it!

  3. I think this one is my favorite from your posts. That may change, of course, but for now I am savoring the creative sweetness of Ms. Dodie. As a gardener whose work sometimes runs amok, how could I not?

    Thanks, DBSO. Now I'm going to go google this woman to find what other lovely morsels she has created.

  4. Lovely words. I am intrigued by your work as a critical care nurse and I'm assuming I know which hospital it is. My son is finishing his third year at UC with a double major in Neuroscience and Biology. Not sure yet what he wants to do after.Med school? More research? He currently works with grad students in a research program at the VA Hospital. Hoping the med field is safer than other professions at the moment as my hubs just lost his job. A bit scary out there for young people starting out. Of course dear daughter starts college at DAAP in the fall in Fine Arts. Umm...probably no less safe in the job area than it ever has been, heehee. But you must follow your dream. I will definitely be visiting for more Cin City, poetry and life in general. Pam

  5. Wow! That is one lovely, lively garden! :)

  6. Well, well, well...I didn't know Mr. B's garden had made it into a poem. I like to call it "the test gardens" because it's always in a state of change (and chaos), but somehow it works.

    Lovely photo, too!

    Oh, and I finally finished the meme! It's so annoying with real life gets in the way of my cyberlife. In the words of JarJar Binks: "How rude!"

    Speaking of movies, Mr. B and I saw Up last night on your recommendation. One word: Brilliant!


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