Photo by Beth Burrell


by George Freek

While Tending My Garden (After Tu Fu)

Clouds float in the air.
You’d hardly know
they were there. The sun
grows warm. In my garden
bees begin to swarm.
They’ll be angry when I
steal their honey. People
move down my street.
They move softly. They’re
discreet, but what life once
moved beneath their feet?
It was there for millions
of years. Life is a mystery
I’m unable to solve.
I look to the stars. I
stare at the sun. After deep
thought, I tend my roses.
The riddle still remains,
and I’m no closer
than when I’d first begun.


Written On An Evening Walk (After Lu Yu)

After a warm rain, the grass
stretches to the horizon.
It meets the infinite sky.
The gardens are as brilliant with
blossoms as a Persian rug.
I enjoy it while I can.
Storm clouds loom ahead.
Clouds are suddenly boulders.
The sky becomes blood red.
I try to ignore it.
Turning away, with eyes
locked firmly on my feet,
I avoid a black weed bed,
and leaves which hung from
the branches like lanterns
fall on my hatless head.