Dead dandelions.jpeg



Stooped over the gravel, back bent, knees crunching

Like the stones, I don’t resemble a God.

Yet as I prise the deep root of the dandelion,

Its tattered mane in gladiator hands,

A score of woodlice rupture from the pit

Where once they lived: some on their backs, prostrate

Like victims of circumstance, or genocide.

Silently vulnerable. Nearby, a blackbird

Bobs up and down, impatient for a feast.

Unblinking, wide-eyed dinosaur descendant,

Its mortgage overdue, with chicks to feed.

Somewhere, I’m sure such eyes are watching me.

For now, I hold the ruptured plant aloft,

The citizens scattering over one another:

Not cruel, but a disinterested God,

Who goes about the business of massacre

And upheaval as part of the mundane, necessary

Process of de-weeding a gravel drive.



A modern fable. But remember: at any one time, we are all of us the God, the blackbird, the woodlouse and the dandelion. 




3 thoughts on “Weeding

  1. Dear James Oh! Wonderful! Just what I feel. There should be more gardening poems, in fact an anthology would be good.

    Saw Richard yesterday. He makes a small inprovement physically every day. Some words are coming through. But miles to go….. We are so happy for the progress he and the hospital have made. But very aware that there is so much more to be achieved.

    Much love from us both, Gran


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