The Garden of William Burroughs

for Tom King by Denise Low

Behind a hedge, poison ivy
pokes three-fingered mitts
through the orgone box.

The backyard lot deepens
into tangled sumac stems
and wilted brown fuzz of asters.

By the kitchen door a pond
nurtures algae scum.

Arrowroot leaves are hatchets.

Hidden outside his window lies
a smaller pond, cattails at edges
and moon-round, a pool
he saw nights before sleep.

A pool where he saw stars
as fingers loosened on pistol.