Mr. Blue's Flowers
Scott T. Hutchison

Mr. Blue's Flowers

Neighbors say that if you value your poochie
then keep her back from the blades
of Bermuda grass greening inside his confinements.
The man with two blue tears tattooed
beneath his scarified left eye takes special care
of his business and his turf. Rumors abound
on how he served
Justice and earned his ink
eliminating weaker evils
in the dark woods of the Big Bad Wolf pen.

I’ve heard that too, but I have to go into retreat
on all those houndish worries and suppositions
when I see him emerge in mornings toting a gallon jug
doctored with Miracle Grow, servings drinks
to his red and black roses. He kindly dipples
the ash of his jowl-hung cigarette
to anxious peonies who crave the remains
of fire, he lovingly deadheads the bloodshot
petunias, calls to the killer bees
to come bless his begonias.
I wonder if partial blindness
diminishes beauty in the weeping eye
of that time-worn beholder—in truth how terrible

are the heart lines criss-crossed
in those palms stained with nitrogen and iron,
hands that nurture riotous blooms
and, after the cutting, take stunning briefness
and prayer to the cemetery, letting
go with something stingingly more real
and permanent than the pierce
of any needle, sharing gifts
that strain for blessed light
in the clouded sun-march
between seed
and the compost heap.

Scott T. Hutchison

has contributed to Chattahoochee Review, Georgia Review, and Southern Review. His new work is forthcoming in Atlanta Review, Fourth River, Aethlon, Carolina Quarterly, and Tar River Poetry.