Will Schmit

Green Thumb in the Eye of a Storm

I planted strawberries
for the inheritors of the earth
whether they be meek,
or Martians.

These modern poems require letters
to stand up for themselves
six feet apart or six feet
deep in the heart.

The stay at home truth has roots in the dirt,
a hope for blossoms, fruit.
The springing groundcovers send feelers
into town under the safety of bees.

Now the rain cleanses everything
outside the window. The streaking glass,
our new caretaker, frames
heaven as episodic.

My tinge of green grove aims
for your blue glove. The promise
of tasting good seems trivial,
until breakfast.

The garden rows spell help.
You can only read it from above,
only believe it in the palm
of tomorrow.



How to Avoid Inflection

I spoke to my father, the dead one
about the colored glass blowing off
Paula’s porch. I mentioned the voice
lessons, working from home, the blue

It would be easier if I wrote to
embellish details, change anecdotal
references to current events.
Folding the lip of an envelope
seals in privacy.
A cloud the color of a horse
covered my rearview mirror
as I drove to the store. Deep
discounts the last thing
on what’s left of my mind.

Since becoming the man he fashioned
I notice trilliums, search the waves
for what’s coming and wonder
if he knew how many times
I’d wash my hands.



Richie Becomes a Rocket Flower.

My friend took a job
impersonating hollyhock
outside the detox cell window.

The first day he stood
in a long stoop
to fool the bees.

You know how uncertain a new job feels
shifting like a Catholic from foot to knee,
not knowing what to do with your hands.

Inside the building people were busy
or putting up fingernail sculptures.

Remember, this is January
so the sky is the color
of pearled peril.

The gardener’s wait for the sun lozenge
to dissolve
before tripping the sprinklers.

Only an hour ‘til the whistle blows.
But who’s counting hours, except Richie
the rocket flower?

Will Schmit is a Midwestern poet transplanted to Northern California. He has been reading, and writing poetry, in between bouts of learning to play the saxophone, for nearly forty years.