The plumeria tree outside Linda Garcia's house gave and gave again. Its soft, five-point blossoms pulsed color from its boughs, shining out to the sidewalk and the dog walkers who passed the house on their daily rounds.
One day, it was gone. Someone stole Garcia's fragrant plumeria tree and the happiness it gave.
Garcia planted poetry in its place.
The little box stands at the corner of her N. California Street yard. The sentinel looks across the street to Verdugo Park, where children practice sports.
It invites the passerby to open it and enjoy. About 20 copies of a new poem are put there every week or two.
"I just like the idea of advancing communication and poetry as 'still' communication," Garcia said. "I like the discipline of it and paring an idea to its essential parts."
Featured this week is "Bloodline" by Paulann Petersen, poet laureate of Oregon. Six stanzas celebrate the moon and womanhood.