Today’s submission is the first of an exciting four-part series. The poetry comes from a women named Barbara Crooker, a talented and accomplished poet from the U.S. I have fallen in love with many of Barbara’s poems. (www.barbaracrooker.com) The four featured poems are taken from a collection that Barbara wrote about a close friend who was diagnosed with cancer .
Irene Miller, a talented and accomplished photographer from Stratford, Ontario has created a picture to accompany each poem. (
Enjoy part I of this powerful duet.
By Barbara Crooker
When my friend calls, long distance, early one Saturday morning,
I listen, knowing there’s something wrong, think it’s her
eighty year old mother, surely not her, she’s younger than I am,
only forty. When she says, “I have breast cancer,” there’s a quiet
on the line, as I search for something to say. And then she
tells me it’s spread to her spine, and there are no words for this.
And because there is nothing I can do, I go out to the garden,
dig the hard March ground, turn over ice crystals in the cold dark
soil, and plant peas, little grey pebbles, tuck them in with a slap
and a chink that might be a substitute for prayer.
For in spite of everything, June will come again, and those little
pairs of leaves will make their run for it, ladder up the air.
And these peas will fill their pods with sweet green praise.
Sweet Green Praise by Irene Miller