She likes red in September. Viney maple, poison oak;
Her plum trees dress well in it. Where she lives, all
Else goes brown. Except the dog roses
Leavening hedges with their hips. She stuffs these
In her pockets on every walk, then does research,
Kindling a ken of potions, liqueurs, oils.
Easily, drying comes to mind; to prep for that
She'll split each pod and rake away hard seeds,
Removing them to her freezer to stratify;
Else they might not emerge come spring. She
Digs out also myriad tiny hairs,
Irritants if retained. It's a slow business,
Not for the impatient, which well describes her;
She knows of this but means to tough it out.
Each hip's a silent mantra: she'll
Push, pull, twist, scrape, sort, and set aside
The emptied husks for drying or infusing.
Eventually the pile is done, just as light fades.
My eyes, she tells herself, are getting on,
But this I can still do. I'll make rose tea;
Evening will fill my cup of mindfulness.
Really, there's nothing more than what there is.