ROOT CELLAR, NEW ENGLAND, 1832
Short, fat, purple gray beets,
cabbage hanging from the ceiling,
potatoes spotted brown like an old man’s head,
round onions, their sting packed hard.
some jolly parsnips like Christmas bells,
and carrots buried in a crate of sand
to thwart the claws of rats.
She sits on a box
in the cool of the root cellar,
eyes this year’s garden bounty.
wonders will it be enough
to last her family through the winter.
Once, it was just her and her husband.
And she asked the very same question regarding love.
AT THE RIGHT TIME
the times of day –
morning, midday, afternoon, night
the truer times of day –
warmth, inspiration, satisfaction, cozy
and the necessary times of day –
bathroom, bills, disagreement, disappointment
and then there’s 9.37 AM
or maybe 11.16PM
the first when an oriole
flutters into our yard
and the latter
as you roll over in bed,
brush against me momentarily –
I feel it my duty
to find names for these times of day –
John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Perceptions and Sanskrit with work upcoming in South Carolina Review, Gargoyle, Owen Wister Review and Louisiana Literature.