In my secret garden

In my secret garden

there are vegetables with peculiar names, strange shapes and foreign heritage;
twisted herbs whose leaves and buds are functional in particular situations;
fruits that are an acquired taste;
contorted bruise-coloured blooms.
I love and love and love them all,
talk to them, irrigate them,
reconfigure their habitats,
fertilise them, preserve their vitality.
Certain hungers need specific foods.

In my secret garden
all the plants are beautiful to me,
always, always, and occasionally
a wanderer appears who has been initiated
by genetics or experience
into the appreciation of the unusual, the non-obvious —

but most of my visitors don’t see a garden.
They see a collection of quirky spiky things,
dangerous cycles, dizzying fractals, transmuted dreams:
the frightful unknown.
That’s ok, I guess —
I don’t want it crawling with people all day, anyway.
That’s why it’s a secret garden.
But it gets lonely.
So I visit their gardens.

But their gardens are so alike!
All plush swards, sculpted bushes, splashy petals
and I get bored and uncomfortable and hungry
so after a while I come home
to this odd foliage
and silence

(First published in Positively Geared Anti-TaxPax 2010 by Perth Poetry Club)