Category Archives: Gardening

The Tree Root – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

“It seemed to me that some things were ugly enough that fixing them was worth trespassing.” Brenna Yovanoff

The Tree Root

It started with a tree root,
which required much thought,
not unlike a military strategy
to follow the mischief imagined,
and, sure enough
it leapt through the garden edging
and, characteristically, it ran
shallow through the lawn,
around the water pipe,
the reticulation pipe,
requiring much surgery,
then under the paving,
pushing up, up, up
till we tripped and stumbled
then down, down, down
into the drain and
round, round, round
in a frenzy through and through
in a confusion inviting reconstruction,
out and along the border garden,
clogging the soil,
refusing the spade,
out to the fence and
under the weak spot
reordering its level before
heading off to the curb.
What seemed like a five minute job,
became a plumber,
a reticulation expert,
some brick-paving,
a little edging,
lawn repair,
fixing a drain,
realigning a fence,
some swearing,
much money,
and that's not the end of this story.


Copyright 2023 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®️ 

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Filed under Free Verse, Gardening, life

One Day – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo: BBC Gardener’s World Forum

“… flowers fall amid our longing and weeds spring up amid our antipathy.” Dogen

One Day

There's a corner of my garden where I nurture neglect,
not much grows there except tenacious weeds
who are visited by long draughts of distant leaves,
where the sod is stiff and unresponsive,
cluttered with roots and lost aspirations,
a vacuous plot of hopes and dreams that mock my inertia,
clouded by dark towering shrubs that refuse to light my way,
leaving no room for change,
sucking my energy just to look at it,
putting it off to another day, 
a years delay,
well one day, 
someday, 
I will transform it.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®️ 

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Accepting The Tears – Prosery by Paul Vincent Cannon

At dVerse Sarah is hosting Prosery (144 words of prose) with an invitation to use a line from a poem by Michael Donaghy called ‘Liverpool.’

The line offered is: “she’d had it sliced away leaving a scar.”

dVerse Poets – Prosery – Slices and Scars

Photo: gharpedia.com A tree wound healing.

“The wound is the place where the light enters you.” Rumi

Accepting The Tears

Unnerving she thought, when we realise how parallels weave their way through our lives. Here among her trees she was confronted with last autumn's pruning. The liquid amber had suffered in the winds and one of its beautifully shaped branches had split and she'd had it sliced away leaving a scar where the limb had once protruded. She hadn't connected it before, but at the same time her father had died. Only now she sensed that she had a scar of grief about her, the tears welled as she remembered the pain she'd excised. She touched the healed callus fibres and felt the ridge where the cut had been, noticing the feelings in herself. The tree was making good progress. Not that she wasn't, but she felt the rawness of the premature cut, maybe now was the time to feel, to finally accept the tears.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®️ 

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Doing What I Can – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

“You keep putting one foot in front of the other, and then one day you look back and you’ve climbed a mountain.” Tom Hiddleston

Doing What I Can

The garden is many things and
not least a teacher in the art of life,
the spider building patiently in a breeze,
ants forming lines of communication,
birds gathering fibres for nesting
one beak-full at a time over a morning,
the apricot tree still letting go its
autumn gold so slowly in the rain,
me pulling weeds methodically
so that energy is conserved,
all the while reminding myself
that life is all about taking time,
doing what I can, when I can,
taking small steps and rejoicing 
in the little things.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®️ 

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Filed under awareness, ecology, Free Verse, Gardening, life, quote

To Tilt The World – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo: backyardbuddies.org.au. which also appeared in February for a different poem- a Burrowing Frog

“Politics is the most corrupt profession on earth, no matter where you are.” Charles Dance

To Tilt The World

The burrowing frog must not be sliced.
I resume weeding my contemplative space,
conscious of worms, skinks, silver eyes, beetles,
in the special corner of my garden
where my conscience is raw, open,
and yet there is a man in the Kremlin, 
the palace, the senate, the curia,
someone some place who I 
would not think twice to slice
had I the the chance to tilt the world,
correcting the pH
of the glug that stifles
every breath
of peace 
in me.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®️

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The Nest – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo: taken years ago, but a common sight in our garden, a finely woven New Holland Honey Eater’s nest. This one fell when I was pruning, but it was abandoned so no harm done. Now I check before I lop, just in case.

“By going and coming a bird weaves its nest.” Ashanti

The Nest

As I peered into the nest in the fork of the tree,
I noted how clean it was in contrast to that of
say, a swallow or other mud bound bird,
so quaint with its woven, found materials,
such masters of recycling are birds,
and such clever architects of style,
I further noted how the nest had weathered
so well through rain and wind, and I yearned 
for that simplicity and space in the storms of life.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®️ 

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So Too In Life – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo: from today.com

“Anger and bitterness can be like weeds.” Connie Rose Porter

So Too In Life

Love for a garden can be devoured 
so easily by its many interlopers,
not least the greedy weed who
masquerades as desired, mimics
for a moment your many plants,
and takes a lion's share of goodness
for itself.

Love for a garden must be strong 
enough to include tough measures
for the removal of weeds at their 
roots, striking at their source and 
strength, eradicating their threat;
as with weeds in the garden, 
so in life.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®

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Is That Why? – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo: owntheyard.com

“You cannot dig a hole in a different place by digging the same one deeper.” Edward de Bono

Is That Why?

Why are holes always so difficult,
resisting the heaviest of sweats,
the greatest intentions of thrust,
the clay is stubborn and felt everywhere,
the sand exhausts as it slides in and in,
removing the turf is never that  simple,
while the tree roots are always attrition,
getting in to dig down is easy enough,
but getting out is another story,
is that why it's called a drain?


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®

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Filed under Free Verse, Gardening, Humour, life

Calling – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo: Nature_Design at pixabay.com

“I’m planting a tree to teach me to gather strength from my deepest roots.” Andrea Koehle Jones

Calling

On a bleak desert plain I planted
a tiny seed, it was the last of its kind,
all others having failed to sprout in
this hostile clime of searing heat and
cheap words, a forlorn hope with
crossed fingers and many incantations,
a seed of tomorrow calling to me in
my sleepless dreams, to plant a future
outside of this malevolent  drama, this 
self-enclosed fantasy we call living.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®

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Filed under awareness, environment, Free Verse, Gardening, life, poem, quote

Following His Lead – a poem by Paul Vincent Cannon

Photo: A Burrowing Frog courtesy of backyardbuddies.org.au Burrowing Frogs burrow backwards into soil, this one is common in Western Australia and like the one I encountered. There are several types of Burrowing frog across Australia.

“The most beautiful people I have known are those who have known trials, have known struggles, have known loss, and have found their way out of the depths.” Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

Taking His Lead

Frogs are fun to watch,
one particularly more so,
disturbed by my digging,
a burrowing frog, uncovered,
sitting quiet, covered in crumbs
of damp loam, looking at me
as if to say, Why? 

I stood still, so glad I had 
not harmed him, waiting to 
see if he was alright and
soon there was a slow, subtle 
movement, he began to disappear,
scraping and pushing backwards 
into the soil, as if not moving at 
all, taking his leave to a safer, 
quieter place.

Following his lead, I put
down my spade and retreated to 
my reading space.


Copyright 2022 ©Paul Vincent Cannon
All Rights Reserved ®

40 Comments

Filed under awareness, Free Verse, Gardening, life, nature, poem, quote