William Dennis 

Like woman’s love, how many shapes
the fruiting vine comes in; fools argue over form, 
to me what matters is what mine comes in.
I’ve pruned in frost, manured in rain
and weeded in hot sun; thus paradox—
I coarsen more as I refine—comes in!
This slope is bare of beauty, 
still stone and clay at end of May, ignored
by butterflies and love till columbine comes in.
Many flowers fighting
are all weeds: they choke themselves.  The gardening hand
is where intelligent design comes in.
I croon to plants to coax their fruit, 
but this one blooms so sweet my begging voice can’t help it
when a little whine comes in.
Delicious shapes would not have been
enough to make Bill guzzle all those ancient, crusty
bottles finest wine comes in.


WILLIAM DENNIS encountered ghazal on a trip to Delhi, and has been fascinated by the form, its atmosphere and its history for years.  His work has appeared previously on The Ghazal Page and in Contemporary Ghazals, R. W. Watkins, editor.  He has a two books of ghazal, available at Amazon in electronic format: Better Than Truth—Not Quite Translations, after Ghalib and Foreign Language—Exploring the Ghazal in English.