She Is Wild

by Lauren Kukla

I’d like to teach you how to love a garden

–unweeded and unheeded–

In that lovely late-summer chaos of early September.

Squash vines and wild grapes bowing toward one another,

then turning away,

tangled in a splendid dance of greenery and growth.


They will try to tame you.

Civilize you.

Make you tidy and unwild.

I have seen this.


My love, don’t you dare listen.

For we are jackpine savages, you and I,

born of the brambles, alive in the ether.

Can’t you see that all this was once frozen? How ferocious life is!


Nature is a woman.

And she is wild.