Jeannie Hoag

There is more to go on

people setting off fireworks

in this neighborhood the cars and sirens

people on their porches and outside

someone's weeding hostas they're hostas

shade-loving plants someone

put them in the sun but so far they're fine



At home the deer when I call home

are in the yard they've eaten

the crabapples and tomatoes and always

the hostas Mom says on the phone

the dang deer's in the yard I went

outside and the deer was eating my hostas

they spray the hostas with

smell the deer don't like a urine of someone

they spray the hostas and the deer

love hostas they come through the woods

from safety



Much like I come from where I am from

to this life which compels me

my cat who compels me

my love who compels me

what better way

to honor my mom and dad and the deer who love

than to be a hosta

and tell the story



And many people do not realize they flower

long stem in the center of those leaves

an avalanche of sorts, of greenery 

having not been on

that sort of mountain having in fact

been from flat land and not

an owner of hostas myself



I learned of the love of my parents for hostas

and the love of deer for hostas

having left and having called repeatedly

to find them watching each other



There is no need here deer love hostas

but plenty of other things to eat

my parents love hostas and watching deer

but there are other flowers



A damaged state, to bargain with them

an empty lot of deerlessness

the shade encroaching further

that house was always dark and

I was always cold, the deer

weren't around the deer arrived

after and were the hostas

natural did they grow on their own

or did someone bring them

did someone plant them