Prayers Among the Garden Rows

by Becky Parker

The rusty wheelbarrow, burdened by fertilizer,
tilted dangerously near the freshly tilled soil.
A yellow cat with its one good eye watched a mouse run
through the wilting blackberry bushes. 
The gentleman farmer hefted the barrow and began the spreading
on tiny sprouts, bulbs, and anything that remotely resembled a living thing.
As he planted, he hummed the old hymn, 
“I come to the garden alone while the dew is still on the roses, and the voice I hear, falling on my ear, the Son of God discloses. And He walks with me, and He talks with me. And He tells me I am his own. And the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known.”
The old hound dog, ears drooping on the battered wooden porch,
let loose his mournful bay in accompaniment. 
He was hopeful, that this would be the year for a harvest. 
A yield, some rain, some growth, any kind of skinny tomato, a sliver of cucumber, 
a rind from a watermelon, an earth apple, anything at all 
on his ½ acre of land-
his place to shine in the sun.

Acknowledgment: “In the Garden” song by C. Austin Miles 1868-1946

Becky Parker is married and lives in Tennessee. She enjoys hearing a tall tale, glamping with her husband, DIY projects, historical fiction, gardening, and spending time with her family. She has been published in Spirit Fire Review and The Potato Soup Journal.

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