Note from Tricia: This is a habun … prose poem plus haiku.
Two Days Before the Opening of Montreal’s Topiary Exhibition
The unicorn’s aileron spirals rain down to the fuschia bed. Umbrellas keep scalps dry, not arms. We believe this sideways drenching can only last ten minutes. Downpour heads toward an hour until my brain registers: this-is-not-an-ordinary June shower. (Like that day that Tokyo’s Edo Castle was empty of tourists because everyone who understood Japanese knew an impending typhoon made it perilous to walk across town.)
Most of the topiaries are full-bodied in vine-twist sinew and leafy bulk – the bamboo-chewing panda rolling and a thoughtful shaggy dog. The green-brown horses stand as tall as monuments to freedom. A dragon with curvy red horns commands respect. Puddles accumulate waves on walkways, a reason to scurry into the Insectarium, a museum of dry insect skeletons skewered on pins with labels. An afternoon admiring what does not move.
roiling summer clouds
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Tricia Knoll is a Portland, Oregon poet who has maintained gardens all her life, sowing the seeds of sanity. She grew up admiring her mother’s roses and vegetable garden. She is an Oregon State University Master Gardener and volunteers at Portland’s Washington Park Rose Test Garden. Her chapbook Urban Wild is available from Amazon and focuses on interactions between humans and wildlife in urban habitat.