Wednesday, September 26, 2018

DMC: "September Garden" by Elizabeth Steinglass

September Garden

I pet the patient lambs ears,     
squirt the cherry tomatoes
into my cheek. I check the milkweed
for tiny yellow eggs, hover near
the sky-blue morning glories
and remember my grandmother’s eyes.
I wait for hummingbirds to pierce
the scarlet salvia and spot
papa goldfinch surfing the echinacea.
Soon the garden will fade to beige,
and all I’ll have are the long grasses
gone to seed and the question
that sustains me all winter:
what will I plant next spring? 

© 2018 Elizabeth Steinglass. All rights reserved.

Click HERE to read this month's interview with Naomi Shihab Nye. Her DMC challenge is to write a letter to yourself in which you ask some questions that you don't have to answer. (Please keep in mind that your poem does not need to be in standard letter form.)

Post your poem on our September 2018 padlet. While some contributions will be featured as daily ditties this month, all contributions will be included in a wrap-up presentation this Friday, September 28th, and one lucky participant will win a personalized copy of her latest collection of poetry from Greenwillow Books:


  1. I think what I love most about this poem, Liz, is its mindfulness—it's keen attention to noticing. That is something I love about Naomi Shihab Nye's work as well. Aside from that, what I love most is, well, everything else. :)

  2. Liz, mindfulness and a keen eye! Do butterflies join your heavenly garden? You're as patient and gentle as the lambs. Your verbs and images bring this oasis to life. I love your use of'hover' and 'surfing'. Beautiful!


  3. Aww...thank you both! And Michelle thank you for sharing my poem, giving us an opportunity to hear and learn from so many poets, and most of all for inspiring us to write. This poem would not exist without Naomi Shihab Nye's challenge and your wonderful blog.

  4. Beautiful, Liz. You've brought your garden and the memories and feelings it invokes to life!

  5. Oh, Liz, I love the mention of the beautiful garden details, the exciting verb actions you've chosen: "papa goldfinch surfing the echinacea". My garden is busy still, but beige will come, I know, and that question, too.

  6. This is so restful and hopeful and exactly what summer fading into fall is for me, though I have nowhere nearly as many plants but probably as many ideas of what COULD be next year. So lovely.

  7. A sustaining question! Comforting choice, Liz, and terrific details.

  8. I love the closeness of your garden, feeling as though I'm looking over your shoulder. And I love planning what to plant in the spring! Lovely poem.

  9. I can so relate to this! Lovely.

  10. Beige. That word encapsulates so much more than describing a color. Beautiful poem, Liz. =)

  11. Just lovely. I was right there in the garden.

  12. Oh, my. When I read, "hover near the sky-blue morning glories and remember my grandmother’s eyes," it brought tears to my eyes. This is a lovely, lovely poem. Thanks so much for sharing it here.

  13. Well-done, Elizabeth. "and remember my grandmother’s eyes." This is a beautiful remembrance amidst a glorious garden.