Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE VIREO, by KAREN SWENSON



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THE VIREO, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: An adam and eve in the autumn of their fall
Last Line: Flutters a blessing about our nettled knees.
Subject(s): Gardens & Gardening; Love


An Adam and Eve in the autumn of their fall
bring order with bramble-scarred hands
to the mildewed roses,
pluck nettles from each other's clothes.

Cropping the carnage of summer's abundance -
black leaves of basil,
tomatoes green or rotting
in rank mats of jointed grass
like marriages that never ripened,
or children who grew wild and weedy -

we plot out a future of spring blooms,
blue pools of grape hyacinths,
daffodils trumpeting beneath the dogwood.
A vireo, come into the garden from his journey,
as though we are innocent of any fall but this,
flutters a blessing about our nettled knees.





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