“Cultivation” by Robert Nisbet

2020 Pushcart Prize Nominee

It being conference season (and an ugly one),
the two men, the ministers, have got away
this Sunday morning, to a roadside tavern,
there to plot, devise desired government.

They share a garden terrace with fat Amy,
the helping girl, who is potting out,
the manager keeping wary watch that she,
bending to the beds and trays of flowering life,
should stoop discreetly, lest her large rump
intrude upon the ministerial thought.

And such a government would aim to be inclusive.
Surely? That needs to be a manifesto thing….

Amy’s trowel eases the soil around the weeds,
which are loosened then plucked neatly free.

Inclusive, fair, must be the heart of the election pitch….

Now she is whittling away dead and decaying leaf,
sprucing, coaxing. Green fingers’ gift.

A reputation for unfairness is electorally…well, as we know…

Now she’s re-potting. Beds are scooped out gently,
fresh life eased in, built round, tamped down.

The manager hovers, still just taking care
that the ministry men are not incommoded,
but they, sipping at coffees with a whisky dash,
are quite relaxed, quite unaware of Amy’s presence.

 

 

Robert Nisbet is a Welsh poet who lives about 30 miles down the coast from Dylan Thomas’s Boathouse. His poems have been published widely and in roughly equal measures in Britain and the USA, where he is a regular in SanPedro River ReviewJerry Jazz Musician and Panoply.

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