Poetry Sunday: The Sleep of Seeds by Lucia Cherciu

I was busy in the garden all last week, mostly weeding and planting plants. And watering. We've had a very dry spring so far, not an auspicious start to the growing season. I have a small - very small - vegetable garden this year and I've been trying to encourage those plants to grow. And I've been adding some more perennials to the garden for flowers. They all need water and the weather has not been cooperative, so out with the watering can, hoses, and sprinklers. I haven't resorted to prayer as the gardener in this poem did but to each his own. Whatever works.

The Sleep of Seeds

by Lucia Cherciu

It didn’t rain all summer.
Instead of water, my father used prayer
for his garden. Despite his friends’ laughter,
he planted spinach and lettuce,
countless rows of cucumbers
in beds lined up meticulously
ignoring old people’s warnings
about the drought.
Every afternoon, he pushed his hat back,
wiped off his sweat,
and looked up at the empty sky,
the sun scorching
the acacia trees shriveling in the heat.
In July, the ground looked like cement.
Like the ruins of a Roman thermal bath,
it kept the vestiges of a lost order,
traces of streams long gone.
He yelled at me to step back
from the impeccable architecture
of climbing green beans,
the trellis for tomatoes,
although there was nothing to be seen,
no seedlings, no tendrils,
not even weeds,
just parched, bare ground—
as if I were disturbing
the hidden sleep of seeds.


  1. When I was reading the title of this post, I was like; This has to be about a garden! I love this poem :)

    1. When I came across it last week, I thought this one is just about perfect for this time.

  2. I think the sight of a good dark cloud would give me a little more hope!

    1. All of our clouds lately seem to be of the fluffy white variety, but chances of rain do look a bit better this week.

  3. Great poem! I love that last line 'the hidden sleep of seeds'. I admit, I am someone who prays for rain, especially with the continuing drought making everything so dry where I live.

    1. We have had an unusually dry spring so far which does not bode well for our summer. But we do have a chance of rain early this week, so fingers crossed!

  4. It poured here yesterday. I hope you got a bit of that lovely rain, too.

    1. We did get a much needed rain. Everything looked fresh and green today.

  5. I love this poem. I've been having to water my rosemary twice a day, it's been so hot and dry that it wilts otherwise.

    1. We've had an unusually dry spring so far. It does not bode well for our summer.


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