Friday, March 01, 2024

Poetry Friday: Holy

I've been doing a writing project during Lent, using daily prompts, and today's word, Holy, made me think of this poem that I've posted twice before here, once in 2012 and once in 2016. (Here's the more recent one, and it has a link to the other.) I love this poem because it's about nature in an urban context, and the way it can dazzle and rearrange our brains to be exposed to natural beauty.

Dennis Craig

I have never learnt the names of flowers.
From beginning, my world has been a place
Of pot-holed streets where thick, sluggish gutters race
In slow time, away from garbage heaps and sewers
Past blanched old houses around which cowers
Stagnant earth.  There, scarce green thing grew to chase
The dull-gray squalor of sick dust; no trace
Of plant save few sparse weeds; just these, no flowers.

One day, they cleared a space and made a park
There in the city’s slums; and suddenly
Came stark glory like lightning in the dark,
While perfume and bright petals thundered slowly.
I learnt no names, but hue, shape and scent mark
My mind, even now, with symbols holy.
You can find today's roundup here, at Linda's place. And below, please enjoy some recent flower photos taken here in Kampala, Uganda.



Irene Latham said...

yes! I love "the way it can dazzle and rearrange our brains to be exposed to natural beauty." I was walking Rosie this morning in the rain and took cover under a cedar tree. When I looked up, all these tiny droplets were suspended from the needles...I experienced that dazzle and jolt right then! xo
p.s. I love the world "holy."

Linda B said...

Thanks, Ruth. Aren't "hue, shape, and scent" the most important memories? Wishing you a beautiful weekend among your own flowers.

Denise Krebs said...

Ruth, what a beautiful poem of the holiness of the flowers. I recently saw that flower in your first photo in Brazil. It was such a unique and beautiful thing I had never seen before I saw it just a few weeks ago. Thank you for sharing this rich poem again. It's my first time seeing it.

Rose Cappelli said...

Thanks for the poem and your lovely photos, Ruth. Scents of flowers - peonies, roses, lilacs - always fill me with memories.

Marcie Flinchum Atkins said...

"came stark glory" what a line! Thank you for sharing this poem!