by Mary Oliver
Down by the rumbling creek and the tall trees,
where I went truant from school three days a week
and therefore broke the record,
there were violets as easy in their lives
as anything you have ever seen
or leaned down to intake the sweet breath of.
Later, when the necessary houses were built
they were gone,
and who would give significance to their absence.
Oh, violets, you did signify,
and what shall take your place?
I'm sure Mary Oliver was writing about wild violets, but since those aren't up here in Erie yet I share this picture of three of my African violets in full bloom in my office right now. My violets have gotten a little out of control as I started with four and am now nursing a couple for some friends who can't get them to bloom--so they say. My "garden" has expanded to eight now.
And that's only the African violets. There is also a Christmas cactus, a white poinsettia that is hanging in there since Christmas, two peace lilies with beautiful tall stems that come out of nowhere and slowly unfold those special white flowers, and there's also a plant that I thought was drying out, whose name I do not know, but its leaves are long and narrow with a beautiful red color.
I work in this garden every day and it's just great!