Sunday, June 13, 2010

An elegant passing of tulips


~~~

Postpost:  By a wonderful cascade of serendipity and act of thoughtfulness, Jean heard and passed on this poem by EJ Scovell, whom I knew nothing about but having read the obituary linked to would like to know more of.  It's so beautiful and apposite that it deserves to be in the main post in the light. 

Blogging, like life, can be like that, you sometimes get more than you put in.


I would if I could choose

Age and die outwards as a tulip does;
Not as this iris drawing in, in-coiling
Its complex strange taut inflorescence, willing
Itself a bud again – though all achieved is
No more than a clenched sadness,


The tears of gum not flowing.
I would choose the tulip’s reckless way of going;
Whose petals answer light, altering by fractions
From closed to wide, from one through many perfections,
Till wrecked, flamboyant, strayed beyond recall,
Like flakes of fire they piecemeal fall.

13 comments:

The Crow said...

Beautiful, rich colors and quite interesting forms. Such graceful deaths.

(WV for this comment is 'cheri.' But, of course!)

Zhoen said...

Stripes at their classiest.

Anil P said...

Beautiful flowers beautiful collage.

We don't get to see them back here on the West Coast, all the more reason to delight in their colours here.

Dick said...

Your tulips passed much later and much more elegantly than ours. A beautiful confusion of colour and shape.

Jean said...

Yesterday on Radio 4 I heard this poem by E J Scovell, which was new to me:

I would if I could choose
Age and die outwards as a tulip does;
Not as this iris drawing in, in-coiling
Its complex strange taut inflorescence, willing
Itself a bud again – though all achieved is
No more than a clenched sadness,

The tears of gum not flowing.
I would choose the tulip’s reckless way of going;
Whose petals answer light, altering by fractions
From closed to wide, from one through many perfections,
Till wrecked, flamboyant, strayed beyond recall,
Like flakes of fire they piecemeal fall.

Lucy said...

Thanks.

These were the cut tulips which were in a vase and lasted well. They were on their way to the compost heap when I decided to put them on the paving and take some pics.

Jean, that's wonderful. I'm going to put it on the main post. Thanks.

Jean said...

In a hurry, as usual, I should have said that the title of Scovell's poem is 'Deaths of flowers'.

HKatz said...

Till wrecked, flamboyant, strayed beyond recall
They do look decadent.

Laureline said...

Just popped in for a good, stiff dose of Lucy and I'm so glad I did. I thought of the three of you often when D and I were careening around Normandy--and so wish we could have been together for part of it. Next time.
Hope your summer is healing.
Xoxo,
L

Jan said...

Havent called for ages...but glad I did...and lovely to see your superb postings again...

Barrett Bonden said...

It is the technically observed process of withering that makes this poem so memorable. What's more it penetrates my general ignorance of flowers and horticulture and forces me to realise I have observed those happenings without paying much attention at the time, unaware that - years later - these words would re-create things in remarkably sharp relief. Briefly I know flowers.

Bee said...

It's funny; tulips are one of my favorite flowers but I've always hated the way they fall apart. I like that poem, though.

I admire the IDEA of a "reckless way of going," but I don't like the idea of going prematurely . . . not to mention spending my last days "wrecked."

Have you heard of this "motto to live by?" Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming WOO HOO, what a ride! (I quote directly from the plaque on my wall.) I'm not really very Dionysian, although I do try.

Your collage is wonderful.

Sheila said...

I love your poem. I want that, too.