Some varieties are named Scarlet O’Hara, Heavenly Blue, Party Dress, Inkspots, and Carnevale di Venezia.
A warm October, the tomato plant still hardy
and green, thick stalk from five months growth,
a solid base for a meager vine to wend its way
counterclockwise around the stem until you can’t
tell where tomato branch ends and flourishing
creeper starts. The blossom, thin-paper white with
five subtle brushed-on watercolor-violet stripes
about the center, the edges of the flower
curling just a touch.
This unexpected invader planted not long ago
by some unknown traveler. A goldfinch
or white-tailed deer, a sweeping nor’easter?
I prudently unwind the threadlike curl
from the struggling leaves of the tomato plant.
Like a neurosurgeon teasing glioblastoma tendrils,
whose delicate star-shaped roots fan out,
tap into the blood supply of the brain. Handily
snip away small sections of tomato arms,
ease out the lattice-like ringlet.
It seems so fragile, genteel, but those slight coils
eventually kill the host plant, their featherweight
flowers a guise, and still you fall in love because
they’re gauzy, charming, and every day a new
bloom unfurls to greet you, then withdraws
each night to never turn up again.
Camille Norvaisas lives in Feasterville and has been a Bucks County resident her entire life. Her work has been published in numerous journals. You can connect with her on Facebook at poetrycamille or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Poet’s Corner is curated by Bucks County Poet Laureate Tom Mallouk and supported by a grant to the Bucks County Herald Foundation made possible by Marv and Dee Ann Woodall.