(upon a painting by Yumi)
If not for bouquets of summer glory gathered by gentle hands
What reason for gardens by the sea?
The muffled break of waves is not as loud
As the whiff and whirr
Black and yellow bumble bee busy in the bloom,
Each comes to gather gold–
Drawn by sunlight and color,
The ladies in hats and summer gowns, baskets on their arms
Stroll down from the house.
When they return,
Marigold scent in hair, dahlia pollen on hem and sleeve,
They will fill the house with rainbows of stock and zinnia.
Even as Neptune sleeps, the sea a great blanket over him
Deep monsters and storms quiet now,
Everything is Energy,
Ocean air blowing streams of light
Whirling through bush and tree, grasses pushing up
Butterflies afloat, the mind brimming, spilling over
Spilling its delight…
Light as a finch skipping on air!
I have dreamed such days, lived too few, when death
Did not seem final, truth not so rare:
Hours pushing open leaves and petal on petal
Unfolding in fragrance….
…flooded with light, holding form
For what we call a day, but is, one flower each calls their own.
The poem first appeared in “Along the Shore” Lost Tower Publishers, London. April 2017
Paintings are by Odilon Redon.