We walked the Los Angeles County Arboretum
which took us through
plantings from the tropics,
There was an herb garden,
greenhouse full of orchids,
pond with fish and birds
a raised bed vegetable garden
and chicken coop.
Most everything was abloom.
Some plants were drooping
and needed water,
which probably won’t be coming as rain;
then we found the sprinklers.
The air is glorious,
after the marine layer lifts mid-morning—
When I arrived at Union Station
I talked for awhile
with a woman who had started her life
in Pawnee, Oklahoma (!)
but spent most of it in Los Angeles.
She was returning that very day—
from a few years in the south,
tending to family matters.
She was relieved.
I asked why
and she talked about how everything is close
and she talked about the weather.
As we sat outside a busy train station
on a busy day (“Friday in L.A.!” she said.)
watching many people
(One man was riding a bicycle backwards.)
I kept looking toward
the palm trees that raise the eyes to the
cloudless blue sky;
I kept consciously
breathing in the cool/warm air.
There is always that possibility—
maybe in an arboretum,
maybe at a busy, peopled place—
to make the connection,
to be aware
of the natural world
that is our home.