10.3 (Spring 2006)
Top Girl
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Michael Estabrook


birdseed garden

I don’t know what
the plants are growing
down in the shade beneath
the bird feeder
but they’re growing
they’re growing
so I haven’t the heart
to clip them back
or pluck them out
or cover them up
with peat moss
or mulch because
they’re growing.


only a rock

Every time I walk past
the little garden area
in the front of the house
alongside the front stoop
outside Robin’s window
my eye catches
this craggy dark brown rock,
all alone in the midst
of my wife’s azaleas and rhododendrons,
boxwood, hibiscus, and holly bushes.
It doesn’t move, obviously,
or change shape or color
(except when it is wet from the rain)
yet every time I pass
it catches my eye.
I feel stupid,
looking down at it constantly,
it is only a rock after all,
but it is what it is
and maybe I shouldn’t feel so stupid,
especially seeing as it will be here
in this little garden
on this earth
long after I am put to rest beneath it.


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