A Hard Rain Fell

A hard acid rain upon my garden fell.
Are chemical particulates now lurking in the soil?
Has acidic deposition negated all my toil?
Have nitric acid and sulfuric acid and
carbonic acid rendered the garden a spoil?
Are the veggies no longer organic
but instead now miasmic and lethal?
The ripening heirloom tomatoes,
luscious looking beauties in shades of pink and
yellow and candy apple red and reddish orange,
have they been transmuted, like Mary Shelley’s
monster, into mutant and toxic frankenfruits?
Have the cukes become nukes?
What about the peppers, crooknecks and zukes?
Has the garden been irreparably befouled?
Must I uproot and dispose of
my treasured but now tainted plants?
Should I sow in their stead rows of hemlock
and hydrangea interlaced with clusters
of larkspur and foxglove and nightshade?
Will baneful plants such as these
grow even more nocuous and deathly
if planted in a soil chemically enriched
by the acidifying particles and gases–
hydronium and nitrate and carbonate–
that a downpour has dispensed?
Will seeds that germinate, take root and
blossom in my chemically ravaged garden
metamorphose into mortiferous monsters,
Frankensteinish monstrum planta venenum?
It was a hard rain that fell.

Floyd D. Anderson lives in Brockport, New York, and can be reached at floydsroom@hotmail.com. Read other articles by Floyd D..