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Ellis Parker Butler

(5 December 1869 - 13 September 1937 / Muscatine / Iowa / United States)

An Old-Fashioned Garden


Strange, is it not? She was making her garden,
Planting the old-fashioned flowers that day—
Bleeding-hearts tender and bachelors-buttons—
Spreading the seeds in the old-fashioned way.

Just in the old fashioned way, too, our quarrel
Grew until, angrily, she set me free—
Planting, indeed, bleeding hearts for the two of us,—
Ordaining bachelor’s buttons for me.

Envoi

Strange, was it not? But seeds planted in anger
Sour in the earth and, ere long, a decay
Withered the bleeding hearts, blighted the buttons,
And—we were wed—in the old-fashioned way.

Submitted: Tuesday, April 20, 2010

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