Denise Levertov


                                      (‘Plants that flower the first season
                                      the seed is sown, and then die’)

All I planted came up,
balsam and nasturtium and
cosmos and the Marvel of Peru

firsts the cotyledon
then thickly the differentiated
true leaves of the seedlings,

and I transplanted them,
carefully shaking out each one’s
hairline rootlets from the earth,

and they have thriven,
well-watered in the new-turned earth;
and grow apace now—

but not one shows signs of a flower,
not one.
              If August passes
and the frosts come,

will I have learned to rejoice enough
in the sober wonder of
green healthy leaves?