Ode to Jean May

Every fall just as the days get shorter and the flowers start dying

a glorious angel appears in my garden.


The season becomes brighter because of her blooms.


Her name is Jean May.


She is a Camellia sasanqua.

When the darkness of fall starts to dampen my spirits,


Jean May comes to my rescue,

to remind me everything has its season.

I love Jean May with all my heart.


She is a blessing.


Foiled by Two Photos

I had big plans for the bunnies.

They were moving outside.

I have spent months working on a pen inside the bunny yard.

There are now two barriers between them and danger.

It has fence, hardware cloth, mesh,

plexi glass, polyethylene and metal.

(Shower curtains will be replaced by metal when Mr. Flower has time to help.)

There are boxes, tunnels and a hutch.

They even have market lights on a timer!

It is quite elaborate and a bit messy. (Sorry neighbors)

But it was all for naught.

My plans have been foiled by two photos from the neighbors’ critter cam.

The first is of three raccoons. I was aware of one, but now feel outnumbered.


The second is the hind end of a rather large coyote.


Years ago one tore down some fence and left a dirty paw print on the window screen.

THUS, those two messy bunnies will continue to come inside at night.

We can’t have them partying with these wild ones.

Mama needs her sleep.




Future Friends

It’s time to start cleaning up in the garden.

Be careful you do not remove some future friends.

We must not compost our companions.

You may recall my writing spider friends


named for the plants they lived on.

Two of the three left behind egg sacs.

Lucy (on the Lucifer) hid hers beside the gutter’s down spout.


Fern (on the Autumn fern) attached hers to the highest fronds.


I most be careful to leave these in a safe place.

It’s nice to know there are future friends

waiting in the garden.


When Everybody Leaves

When everybody leaves

and you are alone with yourself

will you be quietly content

with who you are?

Can you keep yourself company?

Will you know your own voice?

Will you be solid or hollow?

Will you have the strength to sit quietly alone

or will you feel the need to leave yourself

and seek other company?

Everybody leaves.

Who will you be then?



Outside my Garden

The seasons change and there are surprises in my garden,

but I know this place like the back of my hand.

I can close my eyes and walk around my garden as I fall asleep.

This place is part of me. The nurtured part. The cared for part.

There is harmony and balance.

Outside my garden is an alien place.

It’s noisy and crowded.

There are people who puzzle me and noises that scare me.

I have been spending a lot of time outside my garden lately.

The outside world exhausts me.

I smile through the fear. I watch in wonder.

I try to focus amongst the chaos.

Why must I shop with loud music?

Why are folks rushing and rude?

There is angst and anger outside my garden.

I must be brave.

I wear my armor.

When I get home, I will relax.

I will water my plants and watch my little friends.

I will slow down. I will pause. I will pray.

Thank God for my garden.

My heaven.

My haven.


The All-In Mama

These tiny plants transform themselves every fall.

They change from little rosettes to tall towers.

Most plants just throw up a stalk of flowers,

but this little succulent turns into a mama stalk.

I watched a bumble bee climb the flower towers over and over yesterday.

I do not know its name.¬† I just call it “Ghost Rose.”

I hope a reader can help me identify this “All-In Mama.”


Jack O’Lanterns on a Stump

I found a surprise while hiking in the mountains last week.


How lucky to find a lovely grouping of Jack O’Lantern mushrooms on a fall afternoon.


These orange Omphalotus olearius may look yummy, but they are poisonous.

These were perfectly positioned right beside the trail.


I have heard that the gills glow green in the dark, but I have never seen this.

The leaves had not transformed to their lovely fall colors yet here in North Carolina.

I am glad the Jack O’Lanterns stepped in to add color.




Worth the Water

I have had to water these dahlias during the drought.

I knew if I could just get them through to cooler weather

they would return to their glorious blooming condition.

I have been rewarded for my efforts.

They have pulled through and prospered.

Definitely worth the water.