Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Sumac to moon

Let me clasp you
my luminous globe, my rubicund love
in a grab of yearning -
a claw of the dead red heads
of my last year's flowers, and draw you
down to the winter-logged garden,
keep you here, disallow your passing.

Would you tell me now
you are beyond my reach?


Bee said...

That full moon has been keeping me awake; well, that's what I'm attributing it to.

I like the phrase "winter-logged garden." So apt.

Dale said...

Wow. Wonderful.

She'll never out and say it though, will she?

Laura Frankstone said...

"My rubicund love" ---my new favorite term of endearment. I'm in love with this post, image and words.

Sheila said...

Wonderful, truly! What an eye you have.

Sumac takes me back to childhood. It grew all around. And I remember my dad telling of how they used to make "koolaid" from sumac when he was a boy.

Lovely to think we watch the same moon.

herhimnbryn said...

Oh Lucy, how beautiful.Like Bee the full moon here (on the other side of the world) has been waking me in the middle of the nght.

You have also reminded me that I need to add Sumac to my shopping list (have you ever tried it on roast potatoes?).

J Cosmo Newbery said...

Nope. Wouldn't dare.

Roderick Robinson said...

Wait til The Crow reads this. Is winter a time for passion? Seems so and it's very welcome. As one who struggles in this line of business I imagine the moment when "rubicund" and "love" came together and a little voice inside said "Yeah!" Or, possibly, they'd come together beforehand and a poem had to be written to encompass them. If poetry were nothing other than the blessing of such unions it would be endlessly fascinating. But of course, there's more. My second favourite is the mobilisation of an arguably "unpoetic" word such as "disallow", setting it in splendour and giving it new life. You've saved a word, Luce, so sit back and relax for the rest of the day.

Rouchswalwe said...

Lucy! Are you brewing beer over there, too? Now you've got me thinking how sumac would taste in a pale ale ... could dub it the "Full Moon Ale" ...

The Crow said...

Your photo, alone,
was poem enough
to set my feelings
tumbling and rolling,
all hot and bothered.

Then your words traced
lines of joy
across my soul,
and I was lost
in the moonlight.

(I have danced at midnight in the glow of a full moon, to the song of the stars. I was twelve years old. It is time to dance in moonlight again, maybe this coming moon, certainly by April's moon.)

Lucy, this is a magical post, truly wonder-ful. Thank you.

I would love to have a book of your photos and your poems. Are you putting one together?

Unknown said...

The last two lines remind me of what I have often felt about the full moon - that, even if you can't, you feel that you should be able to touch it.

Lucy said...

Thank you very much. Dear old moon, still good for a poem after all these millennia.

I'd had the photo around for a day or so - I guess she's probably waning gibbous by now already, but the poem was very spur of the moment, done last thing last night with only a minimum of revision, which is nice when it happens. The moon was actually much more ruddy red than it appears in the picture, but it seems to be difficult to capture that and the shape of the sumac branches without using cleverbuggery with exposure and tripods and suchlike.

I know nothing of the culinary uses of sumac, but I'm delighted by how many of you do! This led me to research the matter, and I don't think our tree is the right kind of sumac - there are about 250 different species. However, that then led me to the Asian Cookshop site which is now threatening to lead me into all manner of other temptation. Oh dear.

Dick said...

Terrific, both. I love the idea of 'a grab of yearning'. How powerfully the avowedly 'unpoetic' image can work within a fine poem.

christopher said...

The Dark Red Wind

That's when I heard you
say "rubicund" and wondered
if I could ever
measure myself by
your moonlit midnight standards,
the sudden display
of nighttime blue light,
and the whispering sumac
in the darker red
wind of ancient Rome.
Thanks for this, Lucy.

HKatz said...

The words "disallow your passing" are gentle in a way but also decisive and commanding. Confronted with such power, the moon would probably of its own volition remain in your garden.

hebdenjoy said...

Delightful post.

James said...

I love the image. The moon could be captured or escaping. Beautiful post.

Anil P said...

How apt. It would not surprise me if the plant does indeed wish to hold the moon so, with an entreaty you so delightfully wrote.

A Good Moroccan said...


Balazs said...

it was fantastic, really


beautiful photos!

The Joined up Cook said...


A striking photo.

vicki johnson said...

What a lovely post!