Log Cabin Chronicles

Sea Squill Bulbs

ELISHA PORAT

For Ward Kelley

On Memorial Day I kneel
to plant sea squill bulbs in pots,
to place on the cement surfaces
in the small military section.
And when they peek at me and call
I place them once again in dirt,
sit on the lump of stone and watch
how they grow green:
how the white flowering candles
glow in the fall,
how their leaves yellow, unconsoled.
And in the spring, after a year, I lean over the pots
I see how they have cracked the clay,
and how the shards have collapsed
and lie dispersed, asunder.

Translated from the Hebrew by Cindy Eisner

Elisha Porat writes on a kibbutz in Israel.

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Copyright © 2005 Elisha Porat