CALIFORNIA POPPIES

  
   
We aren’t strangers
but upon seeing your vibrant
painting of gold
an Impressionistic contrast
dappled by the company
of our dear friends, purple
lupine, blue-eyed grass,
and yellow buttercups –
I was surprised!
You filled the meadow
making a broad sweeping
statement this spring,
when I thought you were
laying low – because of the
drought – while the
butterflies celebrated your
presence, bluebird’s carried
wisps of dried grasses
building nests in boxes all
as if the sweet perfume
of air left us drunk with
sunshine and I forgot why
I was sad.

—Honorable Mention, Nature category, Ina Coolbrith Poetry Circle Contest, Fall 2016

GEORGETTE HOWINGTON is a poet, conservationist, gardener and naturalist. Her poems are published in Iodine, Sleet, Poeming Pigeons, Sacred Grounds, Poetry Expressed, among others. Her poems placed at the North American Women’s Music Festival, Ina Coolbrith Poetry Contests and the Benicia Love Poem Contest. As a horticulturist, her niche is Backyard Habitat and secondary-cavity nesters. She is a County Coordinator and the Assistant State Program Director for the California Bluebird Recovery Program (www.cbrp.org), an activist in the conservation community in the SF Bay Area for over 30 years and a UC Davis Naturalist of the Mt. Diablo Region. Georgette is also a published garden and environmental writer.

Author’s note: “As we shelter-in going out into nature relieves cabin fever and gives us a spoonful of joy. Sunshine, the sky, birds, flowers… social distancing feels less lonely when you can immerse yourself in Nature.”

Other work
Not Bad as War

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