Valerian

— Janet Trenchard

She drinks cup after cup of a tea
made from the chopped up
dried root of valerian,
said to calm the nerves.
She keeps little bags of it lying around
smelling rank, like dirty socks.
Funny thing, too, is how she hated
that valerian that grew wild
all over the back yard
where she and Norm used to live,
with the neat little rose beds
while all  around them stood
the valerian, wild and tall,
with roots so strong
they could break up a patio.
In the end she gave up
trying to get rid of them
and decided it was nature’s plan
for patios, no use fighting it
they would break up anyway,
like sheets of ice
and drift slowly
apart

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