THE U.S. BOTANICAL GARDENS WASHINGTON D.C.
slick with the residue
of that morning’s watering,
green hose resting
slack between the leaves.
We would come here, safe,
afternoons, and sit, not touching,
humidity in the 90s
and helicopters hovering
a block beyond the Hill.
Though you are here no longer
I reach out to touch your arm,
trace the sweat, the way it beads
around the curve of your skin
From the display of medicinal
herbs, I break small leaves
into the palm of my hand:
yarrow, for internal bleeding,
foxglove for the muscles of the heart.
And when we meet, a year
from now, by chance, the
departure lounge at Heathrow,
the platform at Gare du Nord,
that harbour front café, and,
uncertain whether or not to kiss me,
you hold out, instead your hand,
I will slip into it these remedies
I have long carried, in the knowledge
that, nurtured, love flowers in the darkest place.
from ASLANT Poetry / John Harvey – Photography / Molly E. Boiling
(Shoestring Press, 2019)
You can see a selection of Molly’s photographs here …