The Public Garden (Wendy Mnookin)

On this beautiful spring day, today’s email from The Writer’s Almanac shares the following poem by Wendy Mnookin. It connects with all the promise of springtime, and the joy that comes (especially in Minnesota) when buttoned-up winter gives way to the returning sun. Our common places–parks and lakes especially–will teem with people this weekend, giving thanks for what “love has rained on us all”.

The sun is shining and I’m content
to be myself, walking across the Common
as families queue up by the Swan Boats,

real swans parting the water
in elegant wakes. This is
la vie en rose

on a lawn vivid with spring
people walk their dogs, peeling off
in clusters of introduction and gossip;

below a sign that shouts Don’t
Feed the Ducks, families throw
wadded-up bread into the pond;

kids on the carousel want
More! More! Frisbee players,
tourists in Red Sox caps, babies

with their dimpled elbows,
the guy on stilts, the pretzel vendor,
the woman holding out a cup for change

as she recites our forecast,
I’m taking it in, all of it, sun
and melting cones, skinned knees

and soothing words
and single shining tears,
whatever love has rained on us all.

Source: Wendy Mnookin, Dinner with Emerson (Tiger Bark Press, 2016). Found online here.

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