Iowa Writes

DIANE FRANK
Planting Flowers in the Intuitive Garden


I didn't plan where to put the irises.
The bulbs went in like a snowfall,
and two seasons later
when squawking geese shadows
flew south across the moon,
poppy seeds scattered where they fell.

As the tangled roots of warmer weather
push their way to the surface of the field,
daffodils collide with tulips.
Blueberries twist their branches
around rose petals
like a dancer who has stretched so far
beyond her natural shape
that the form has to break.
I dance in the garden at night
with pink lace climbing my ankles
and my toes bruised like blueberries.

I didn't plan where to put the irises.
The bulbs went in like a snowfall,
and two seasons later
when squawking geese shadows
flew south across the moon,
poppy seeds scattered where they fell.

As the tangled roots of warmer weather
push their way to the surface of the field,
daffodils collide with tulips.
Blueberries twist their branches
around rose petals
like a dancer who has stretched so far
beyond her natural shape
that the form has to break.
I dance in the garden at night
with pink lace climbing my ankles
and my toes bruised like blueberries.

Every day I add another flower—
columbines surprising the lattices on the porch,
shasta daisies with double rows of petals
wild as ostrich feathers or snow,
nasturtiums with edible blossoms.
Summer comes in a flood, but the wind is still breathing
with dahlias curling their leaves toward unknown colors.

I want to make love in the intuitive garden,
with peonies bent to the ground
by thunderstorms.
I want to dance in a gallery of angels
surrounded by wildflowers
and a pasture of goats and sheep.
Every day I add another flower
like the petaled surprise of love.
Every day the magenta blood of wild berries
stains my fingers and my cheeks.

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About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

Find out more about submitting by contacting iowa-writes@uiowa.edu


DIANE FRANK

Diane Frank is author of five books of poems, including The Winter Life of Shooting Stars and Entering the Word Temple. Her friends describe her as a harem of seven women in one very small body. She has mentored hundreds of writers at San Francisco State University, City College of San Francisco, The University of Vermont, and the Professional Writing Program at MIU in Fairfield. She divides her time between Iowa and San Francisco—where she dances, plays cello, and creates her life as an art form. "Planting Flowers in the Intuitive Garden" appears in Voices on the Landscape: Contemporary Iowa Poets, edited by Michael Carey (Loess Hills Books, 1996).

This page was first displayed
on December 11, 2007

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