Some Very Curious Plants
My Grandpa grew giant squash,
feeding them multi-grade engine oil.
They loomed in the dusk, tendrils
coiled like insulated cables.
People came from far away, from
overseas, to gawp at the prodigies,
a small cult sprang up around
Grandpa’s magic, an eco-craze.
As a kid, I would spy on him
anointing long frozen beds
with gloopy muck, his fingers
dextrous calloused sticks.
It gave me dreams of liquorice
like wire looped around my teeth;
on waking, just for a moment,
it was impossible to speak.
from From The Wonder Book of Would You Believe It? (Mariscat, 2016), © Jane McKie 2016, used by permission of the author