December Drought

In weeks with no rain, 

the lime tree and roses sip

rinse water from the shower,

as eloquent in their distraught and drooping silence

as a languishing invalid in a romance novel.

Meanwhile the bougainvillea, 

that strapping hero of the garden,

shamelessly flaunts a riot of red bracts,

and the clock vine winks back,

allowing coy orange starbursts

to peep from her curtain of green.

It is December, and we poets must be brave.

Bake cookies and trim the tree,

sip eggnog at the holiday masquerade,

but if you happen to see,

as you sign and stamp

one more Christmas card,

a monarch butterfly go by,

take in the flutter-dance

like Renoir instead of Wordsworth.

Flaunt your own finery

and wink back at this season’s

swaggering would-be suitor. 

He doesn’t need to know

what you are saving and savoring,

that you are a succulent

with poems in your cells.

Image created by Jennifer Prince and shared under Creative Commons License BY-NC-ND 4.0

Published by

Mary Camille Thomas

Mary Camille Thomas is a native of Santa Cruz, California who considers herself lucky to have returned after living internationally and on the road. She is a librarian by profession, and her poetry has appeared in The Moving Force Journal, Porter Gulch Review, and Sisters Singing. She is currently working on a novel called What Lies Buried and a collection of poems of the spirit.

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