In honor or my favorite poem, Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal, by Alfred, Lord Tennyson: behold, The Fountain of the Sylvanian Family. This was, of course, to a certain four-year-old, a more important purchase than such frivolities as a toilet or a dining room table.
I’ll quote the first stanza here of NSCP here:
Now sleeps the crimson petal, now the white;
Nor waves the cypress in the palace walk;
Nor winks the gold fin in the porphryry font:
The firefly wakens; waken thou with me.
Weak in the knees, are we now? Go back to the toy fountain picture, I’ll wait….Feeling steady now, right? Gotta express my appreciation to Alfie on the particular use of punctuation: love love love it, so sexy (and no I’m not joking.)
Poetry and I have a love-hate relationship. It’s mostly one sided, true, since Poetry has yet to acknowledge my existence. I love the way it feels to get those emotions out and on paper in a physical form, to hold them in my hand. I hate that poetry is the medium in which I have to do it. It ain’t cool, and it doesn’t exactly fill the coffers.
You’ve got your structured forms, sonnets, etc; you have to pick and choose and articulate all that stuff inside of you and fit it into these constricting perimeters. You have to obey the rules, without losing yourself. Good preparation for life, now that I think about it. It reminds me of the way Japanese moms tweak their kids preschool uniforms. Following the rules, but still finding a way to be unique.
Then you’ve got your free verse, where you flounder about in a sea of chaos and anarchy with nothing solid to hold onto. You have to hike up your boots, hitch up your britches, accept the fact that it may not be pretty and it probably won’t end well, and then wade on in. Kind of like bathing suit shopping, or is that just me?
So here, I’ve got my thigh high boots on today (the fishing kind, not the sexy kind,) and I’m game.
The Plunge (by yours truly)
I can’t fight it anymore, my heart is filled with verse,
and perhaps what’s even worse- it doesn’t always rhyme.
And as with any love/hate relationship, I’m gonna feel all vulnerable and stupid in the morning….
Let me quote some more of my Alfie for you, then I’ll be out for the weekend.
Now folds the lily all her sweetness up,
And slips into the bosom of the lake:
So fold thyself, my dearest thou, and slip
Into my bosom and be lost in me.