Urban Nature Site #11

Urban Nature Site #11 | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Cyclamen flowers at the Oxford Botanic Garden. Courtesy of Tejvan Pettinger/ flickr.

There is strength in numbers, as shown
by the return of cyclamens, nodding

their purple heads along the path.
I try not to smash them, there are only

three patches of wilderness left, in this city
nature has been backed into a corner,

no longer ferocious, one good picnic,
or burrowing dog can easily wipe out

the next generation. Here the spring flowers
come in November, tulips, jonquils, wild

poppies, black iris, lifted from hibernation
by the rain, sometimes from this hill

you can see a rainbow, across the valley
of Gehinnom, over the mythic pink blur

of Moab, with its hazy and remote goings on.
Occasionally, a small gold bead is found,

proving there was an industrious age,
or a bell, that fell from the High Priest’s robe,

a reminder that history will sustain us,
if we can just remember what happened.

Jane Medved is the poetry editor of The Ilanot Review and the author of Deep Calls To Deep. She is a visiting lecturer at Bar Ilan University and lives in Jerusalem, Israel.
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