In our front yard, French lavender grows to meet us
purple buds spilling fragrance on the wind.
Near the garden entrance a pine tree aspires
to climb the sky;
my wife cleared the lowest branches
and a low homemade seat
exploits the shade.
There is a square buxus hedge
that separates the garden from the footpath;
in front of the buxus rose bushes meander upwards
their long spindly branches stretching above
the hedge’s neat flat surface.
A mosaic bench nestles between them
straddling a patch that once sprouted gold and yellow
with spring bulbs.
In the centre, Australian natives hug the ground,
timid green leaves cling to the soil like shy children.
Once we found a fungus growing in mulch,
an alien orange amongst the darkening wood chips,
Tentacles reached outwards from a gaping blood red maw.
A pungent smell battled the lavender for dominance.
We watched it bloom and push its reach with morbid concern,
fantasised about an impending invasion from space.
Eventually the limbs shrivelled into the fading maw.
We did not mourn its passing.