Bumblebees drowse on the tall purple phlox
and wake to taste the nectar once again
its spicy scent wafts all along the rocks
that line the driveway leading to the garden
alive with native growth the insects relish
milkweed for Monarchs, boneset, and sweet Joe
Pye weed, blazing star, and spicebush
host to its namesake Swallowtail. Just now
I saw its midnight wings spread out upon
a bee balm blossom, fragile stamens bent.
A flutter of white spots and it was gone.
Birds feed on worms and seeds, but also have their bent
for certain flowers. The goldfinch go for black-
eyed Susans, hummingbirds make straight for red
of cardinal spires and the royal catch-
fly, orange trumpet vine, butterfly weed
and sometimes violet ironweed and phlox.
A gorgeous grafted bloom deserves its prize
but wingéd creatures choose with other eyes.
about the author
For many years, Cecile Cary taught English at Wright State University, specializing in Elizabethan literature, publishing articles and editing a book in that field. When she was a student, she published a few poems and has recently started to write them again. Last year, she won a prize in the Dayton Metro Library poetry contest.