The Order of Their Living

Our cross-the-road neighbors, the McCrackens,

Are perennial winners of Yard of the Month.


I water for the McCrackens. Drink


Grape Kool-Aid in slant sun and marvel

At the order of their living things.


Flower and shrub that mind


As well as Mrs. Long’s

Standup-straight lunch line.


Our white azaleas come from

The McCrackens. Extras they said.


They don’t complain


About tire tracks on the lawn

When my father takes too many pills


And Rescue Squads back

Over their begonias.

In paperback edition of Opening the Mouth of the Dead

Published in Bellingham Review