At The End Of It All, What Will Remain? Poem by William Jackson

At The End Of It All, What Will Remain?

Rating: 5.0


At the end of it all, what will remain?
The garden will return to dry fallow ground,
and the brilliant scarlets and violets of the coral beans
I so thoughtfully planted near the downspouts
will fade into oblivion along with the purple sages.

The fiery orange reds of the pomegranates will wither
as the trees die out one by one. Even the southern magnolias
will stop producing the lemon scented white flowers
that have always turned black when curious little fingers
have willfully touched them, and sooner than later,
these same flowers and the trees will turn to dust
unless someone takes the time to acidify the soil
and give the roots long cool drinks.

More than likely someone will tear down the house too.
The highway or some other pressing necessity
will take precedence over the homestead and neighboring houses.
The shade trees will all be uprooted by bulldozers,
including the Texas Ash, the Mountain Laurels, a Red Bud,
and some Cedar Elms.

Will it have been enough that we loved each other
and raised two boys the best we could?
Will the world have become an even better place
for our boys and for all of humanity that follow in their footsteps?
How long will the seed of man continue to populate the earth?

No matter! Today I pulled weeds,
and I picked a yellow squash from the garden.
I boiled it with a bit of onion and added a touch of butter.
It tasted delicious with a sprinkle of salt and pepper.

COMMENTS OF THE POEM
Patricia Gale 30 April 2006

The endless question, but a lovely ending for the fruit of your labor. Deep thought. Patricia Gale

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Danny Reynolds 30 April 2006

The air of inevitability, hangs throughout. The pictures show a true appreciation of what you have, and have had. The end is a warm summer breeze, blowing away the mists of regret. Brilliant. Danny

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Bobby Hamby 30 April 2006

very lovely like a painting meaningfully disintigrating questions of stagnation

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Anjana Aravind 30 May 2006

This is a picture perfect poem. Like a sad painting. Anjana

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Sandra Fowler 12 June 2006

Memory is the gift we always hold in the landscapes of our mind.Praise for your nostalgic poem. Kind regards, Sandra

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Roseann Shawiak 11 January 2014

You have painted a beautiful picture in my mind with this poem - very vivid. I love it. Can identify with the garden, as my oldest son is always planting things around the house. As for the destruction of our environment, forests, history, etc. for mundane things such as freeways, malls, parking garages - it irks me no end that humanity is destroying our beautiful world. Great poem. Thank you for sharing, RoseAnn

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Greenwolfe 1962 24 February 2008

You write like you care about the reader. If it's by design, you're a great writer of prose. If it comes naturally to you, then you're a gifted teller of stories and history. If it is both, then you're a great artist and a greater man. Greenwolfe 1962

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Ivan Donn Carswell 11 February 2007

At the end of it your beautiful poem will remain with its treasure chest of memories. One would hope it was revered and read with the same tenderness it was written. Rgds, Ivan

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Michael Shepherd 17 September 2006

Masterly. The real stuff. How did I miss reading you before this?

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Simple Simon 05 September 2006

You have proved even the weeds have a taste of their own thro' your poem. So nothing is a waste in this world.

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