Libby Sommer

My crimson bougainvillea 
lives in a good-drainage-pot. 

I feed it fertilizer, and I keep 
the soil a little on the dry side.

The bougainvillea thrives 
with five hours of full sunlight a day,

scrambling vigorously up
a frame attached to the wall.

It flowers three times a year 
with heavy pruning, lack of overwatering,

a fertiliser low in nitrogen and its roots
slightly restricted in a small container.

I watch the plant’s flourishing from my bed:
its blooming brings beauty to my day.

It stops me from watching the latest news.

Libby Sommer is an Australian award-winning author of My Year With Sammy (Ginninderra Press 2015), The Crystal Ballroom (Ginninderra Press 2017), The Usual Story (Ginninderra Press 2018), Stories from Bondi (Ginninderra Press 2019), Lost In Cooper Park (Ginninderra Press 2020).

Her debut novel, My Year With Sammy was Pick of the Week, Sydney Morning Herald and winner of the Society of Women Writers Fiction Book Award 2016. She is a regular contributor of stories and poems to Quadrant magazine. Her first poetry collection, The Cellist, A Bellydancer & Other Distractions will be published by Ginninderra Press in May 2022

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