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My Grandmother writes of her garden
wallflowers & cornflowers
from early April showers
like beautiful wounds healing across te bed
from blue to purple to dark pink
to light pink to white
& then geraniums in May
But she cannot see the geraniums

She writes of her garden
from the cool of the cellar
where she cannot see zinnias explode
with life or blood-red roses
contrasting the portulacas’ flesh
An armored vehicle is sowing shells
(not cockle shells) broken glass
between the rows of flowers

She writes of her garden
not so much of the British Consul
asking missionaries
south of the Yellow River
to evacuate to Hankow
but of yellow marigolds
& hollycocks
& Japanese sunflowers for the house

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