hundreds of daffodils shake out of the soil, pried gently from hardened clay. they tumble heavily onto butcher paper, gently wrapped and left on the porch to dry. boxwood roots stretch into the spaces they leave behind.

i clear some plants, which i deem weeds, to make room for other plants, which are also weeds. balloon flowers can stay because i think they are cute. fireweed can stay because it has been here for longer than i have. bindweed must always go.

from hours of staring at plant identification charts, some words embed themselves into my consciousness, even as i don't think of myself as a dedicated botanist. when i see a wide-spreading flower with a central ball and thin petals, my mind whispers asteraceae, the flower like a star. slowly, in my head, i build a dichotomous key from scratch. and this is how is goes.

15 August 2020 22:05

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