John I. Blair
Ranked in an arcing row beside the drive
Their terracotta pots look almost grand,
The ruddy clay just lightly mossed,
Receptacles for rescued roses.
The tattered belles, among them
Duchesse de Brabant,
Fair Bianca, Belinda’s Dream,
Once held court upon our patio.
Then they fell deep into neglect,
Finery shabby, spotted, yellow,
Immured like Sleeping Beauties
In rampant vine and briar.
I found them nested shyly
Behind the birdbath,
Lost beneath the redbud’s leaves,
Half swamped by holly ferns.
Now, watered, rested, fed,
Once again these faded dames
Assemble for another show
Before their fickle public.
©2005 John I. Blair