The Goddess Waters Her Plants
by Katherine Hoerth Katherine Hoerth

Katherine Hoerth is the author of a poetry collection, The Garden Uprooted (Slough Press, 2012). Her work has been included in journals such as Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, BorderSenses, and Front Porch. She teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Texas Pan American and serves as Assistant Poetry Editor of Fifth Wednesday Journal.

I tend this garden, ritual as dawn;
I come to bead the thirsty with my hose.

I overlook lantana sprigs that burst
in shades of sunrise at my naked feet.

All florets lean their faces to the sky;
my eyes are no exception, creeping up

toward sunlight like the eager buds of figs.
I see a man, his shoulders broad, his skin

the auburn shade of earth, ascend my palm.
His hands reach up to touch the crown of fronds.

His saw hums like a bee and aged leaves sway.
The skirts fall first and then white flowers drop.

I soften like cenizo leaves, my mouth
hangs open, fuchsia and in bloom. The hose

sprays on and water puddles at my feet.
A toad emerges from the weeds and croaks

as if to thank me for the summer bath.

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