we used to watch them fall
pretend our eyeballs were out of sockets
to pick up and fit back in.
the day our brother was born
dad planted a vegetable garden
and on weekends he’d watch it grow
maybe it was easier to mark the progress
of a tomato
a tight green to a yielding red.
he was weeding when our brother took his first step,
fertilizing, the day he stopped breast feeding,
pruning upon first speaking.
there was a draught when our brother was young,
so no longer could he make puddles in the yard,
floating leafs and the dried skins of plums
on the surface.
but there was enough water for the garden.
and dad brought squash to the table,
presented like trophies,
baskets of green beans.
subsistence farming was a novelty,
the straw hats, the Stanley tools, the sweat,
the shed our brother used to jump
off, into beds of pine needles.
pretend we are farmers,
pretend we are in need.
put the leftover in Tupperware and microwave later.
from the window of the kitchen
he watched the garden grow,
and we buried our cat out there,
then the iguana,
giving them to the zucchini.