My Roses Aren't Doing Well
by David Sutton

    Abundant sun, ample water
    Special food of time-release pellets
    Combo-spray for aphids and fungus
    Gentle words of encouragement
    A light kneading of the soil with trusty spade
    And yet my Alba Maxima
    Cramoisi Superieur and
    Comte de Chambord
    Produce only the scrawniest of buds
    The little old ladies at the First Baptist Church
    Ooh-ahh at a basket of robust blossoms
    From the garden of John French
    A retired academic and brother in Christ
    The petals of his most recently formulated hybrid
    Explode with sumptuous colors
    Why does God favor him over me?
    What grave sin have I committed?
    Am I really such a bad person?
    Maybe I should listen to my wife
    Instead finding fault with myself
    As I so often do
    I should just have my soil tested

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