A Gardener's Words for the Day

by Priscilla Long Issue: Spring/Summer 2021

I stare out the window at the green 
Mahonia tree trembling as if in ecstasy, 
the miracle of bushtits, little brown birds
flitting, the flock in a frenzy of feeding.
I gaze at the winter garden, osoberry
in bud, hellebores blooming mauve, 
the sapling paper birch regal, its trunk 
all rubies and copper. I open my laptop 
to the pandemic—2 million dead, violence, 
non-mask-compliance, and in Washington
DC, windows smashed, swastikas.
I learn my new words: Follicle. Panicle. 
Petiole. Pedicel. Peduncle. Sedition.

Priscilla Long

Priscilla Long is author of six books, the most recent of which is Holy Magic (MoonPath Press).  She is a Seattle-based writer of poetry, creative nonfiction, science, history, and fiction and a long-time independent teacher of writing. Her book of connected creative nonfictions is Fire and Stone: Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? (University of Georgia Press). Her first book of poems is Crossing Over (University of New Mexico Press). Learn more at www.priscillalong.com.