I don’t always get poetry. Sometimes it can be too abstract for me to understand but when a poem is a story it touches me in a way that is far more visceral and immediate than a novel. The Gardener by Stephen James Smith touched me deeply.
There is something very beautiful about a son writing a poem for his mother, but this is no soppy Hallmark poem, no this an honest poem that shows her strengths, the sacrifices along the way and her weaknesses. It is a dialogue on the mother / son bond, one I identify as a single parent raising a teenage son alone. I also connect with its literal and metaphorical theme of gardening, the ebb and flow of life through food, fruit and flowers. The cycle of life is all in the four plus minutes of the poem.
This is a poem that is best heard (it is a beautiful video) which you can view on Youtube. Personally I love the work of Stephen James Smith and in my humble opinion he is a poet on the rise who is creating amazing literature.