When we didn’t move to Philadelphia,

we didn’t buy the hanging flower basket

for the front stoop in Old City.

We didn’t ride bicycles to the market

and fill your basket with Roma tomatoes

and eggplant. You don’t like eggplant.

And you thought Philadelphia would lose

its lure if we had a mailbox, a sconce

in the foyer, stairs that creaked.

We kept our distance and bought a dog

in a small town beside railroad tracks

that haven’t railed trains in forty years.

It’s quiet beneath these stars.

And tonight on our walk, when you asked

if I had any regrets, I had already begun

writing a poem about hanging baskets

and a love that follows us

wherever we have and haven’t lived.


Wes Ward earned his MA in Writing at Johns Hopkins University. His poetry has appeared in North American Review, Sewanee Theological Review, Birmingham Poetry Review, and elsewhere. He was a finalist for the Bridport Prize in the UK. Wes teaches English and lives with his wife and children in Pennsylvania.