Janis Haag

Pink Hollyhocks

The stalks shoot up first,
though you have done nothing
to deserve them, restarting
from last year’s leftovers,
fuzzy green lengths, extending
slender arms that end
in plate-sized leaves,
tiny buds clustering like tumors
along each stalk, ones that will grow
and burst into frilly magenta,
taking over the bed by the garage,
growing taller than you,
sending you searching for sticks
to prop them up, stretching
toward an almost-summer sky.

Jan Haag, a writer living in Sacramento, California, admires the art of pithy poems.