The Gardener

by Stephen Paden

The garden last year was full
of ripe, colorful vegetables,
yearning to be plucked
as they bulged in the midday sun.

The garden this year is barren,
for the gardener is definitely gone;
his tools placed carefully in the shed;
his apron hanging on the hook next to the door in the house;
his seeds still in packets sealed shut;
his body beneath red and green ghosts
that haunt this dead place.

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