Elizabeth Wallace

As water hyacinths surround
our boat in Jean Lafitte Park
the swamp man explains

how these waxy Japanese plants
were brought in to cleanse
murky waterways

how instead they grew
into dense unexpected
flotillas of weed

how nutria from Argentina
were imported to eat
up the surfacing mess

how they then ate
everything else, including
the sugar cane

how there is now a varmint bounty
though the swamp man tosses them
marshmallows, just the same

I take your hand and recall
how once I believed
that love could eradicate need.

Poems used with permission of the authors, and may not be re-used without their permission.