Poems & Essays

11 Nov

Autumn Garden

General/Column 4 Responses

After the morning tantrums
come yogurt and blueberries
and endless chatter as
we watch the caterpillars
fat and slow,
striped green and black,
stippled bright yellow
in the container on the table.
Caterpillars the toddler found
roaming the fennel fronds
out in the garden.
The garden now overgrown,
tomato plants leaning on each other
like drunk friends
at the end of a long night.
It was her father
who took her
to the garden,
who noticed the caterpillars,
who found the netted carrier
to collect the small critters,
fronds and all,
a tiny, temporary habitat
for her amusement and inspection.
If we were a still life painting,
we’d be called
“Mother and Child Breakfast with Caterpillars.”
You see, the father is not at the table.
He’s already gone off to work,
even today, a holiday.
And yet, in the early morning hour
before he goes,
he walks to the garden
to spy small creatures,
to gentle them into a container,
to ask his child,
what colors do you see?


Sarah Bousquet is a freelance writer living in coastal Connecticut with her husband, 2-year-old daughter, and two cats. She writes essays, flash fiction, and poetry. She’s also a contributing blogger at Brain, Child Magazine where she was named New Voice of the Year. She blogs at https://onebluesail.com.

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  1. Susan Tummins

    November 11, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    Beautiful, joyful slice of family life!

  2. Ellen

    November 11, 2016 at 9:46 pm

    A lovely moment–thanks!


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