Ghost of a Garden

Sometimes I discover I have gone downstairs,
crossed the grass and found myself in here:
the tool-shed caught in a lash of brambles,
bindweed, and tall ivied trees like pipecleaners.
It stares out slackly on a garden run to seed:
the lost tennis court, grassed-over benches,
a sunken barbeque, snagged with blown roses;
the tidemarks, plimsoll-lines of abandonment.
The courtyard walls are full of holes the swallows
try to sew—in and out of them like open doors.
In the corner of the shed my father is weeping
and I cannot help him because he is dead.

This article is available to online subscribers only.
Please choose from one of the options below to access this article:

Print Premium Subscription — $94.95

Purchase a print premium subscription (20 issues per year) and also receive online access to all all content on

Online Subscription — $69.00

Purchase an Online Edition subscription and receive full access to all articles published by the Review since 1963.

One-Week Access — $4.99

Purchase a trial Online Edition subscription and receive unlimited access for one week to all the content on

If you already have one of these subscriptions, please be sure you are logged in to your account. If you subscribe to the print edition, you may also need to link your web site account to your print subscription. Click here to link your account services.