Thursday, March 22, 2007

Poetry Thursday #12

Today's challenge is: "Write a poem motivated by an image — preferably one that is in the form of a photo you can post with your poem. If you don’t have a picture of it, that’s okay. Tell us about the image in the backstory, which you can post before your poem. Or, if you’re really daring, grab your camera and get out there and capture an image and use it as motivation for a poem."

This was written some time ago. I've enjoyed pulling it out and rereading it, and didn't change a word. It was inspired by a very real yellow rose in a real garden on a July day so hot it was breathless, but with a slight breeze. The rose's participation with the two not-meant-to-be lovers, including its dried and desicated end, is all imagination. Or maybe it's a memory--like the rose, I've forgotten. Lamentations might have been a better book in which to place such a flower, but it had too many syllables. It has fabulous phrases and images of bitter tears if you ever need that for a poem. However, isn't the book of Job closer to the symbol of all that can go wrong, will?

The last rose
by Norma Bruce
July 1997

Yellow rose in the garden
Blushed peach by her cheeks,
Splashed pale with his white passion.

Yellow rose in the sunlight
Fragrant in their hands,
Waving good-byes to July.

Yellow rose in the clippers
Snipped between kisses,
Pricking her finger crimson.

Yellow rose in the crystal
Filled with his hot tears,
Shedding thorns against the glass.

Yellow rose in the Bible
Faded summer joy,
Pressed between pages of Job.


Crafty Green Poet said...

I enjoyed reading this, the repitition of Yellow Rose works well. The Book of Job is appropriate too i think!

Beaman said...

Nice poem. It leaves a nice feeling upon completion.

Joan said...

Beautiful. This is my kind of poetry -- a story suggested, not told.

Tammy Brierly said...

Wonderful poetry of this beautiful rose. I need to go read Job, I've forgotten.

strauss said...

What a lovely photo, I could practically smell it.
Really enjoyed the movement of the rose and the action taking place around it.
I have been reading your poems for a couple of months now and you never fail to move me with your words.

Unknown said...

Hi Norma, thanks for stopping by to comment on my panther poem. Your rose photo is lovely - I also find roses very inspiring. I think it must be archetypal in some way. On Sunday we visited the Natural History Museum in London and were struck by the fact that the rose was listed amongst the most influential of plants on the development of man, and that the reason given was poetry! All the other plants mentioned were there for obvious practical reasons - rubber, cotton, mulberry (silk), wheat, etc. There are a couple of poems on roses on my site (search via "All Tia's Poems" if you're interested). In fact, I might just put up another one today, now that you've got me thinking about it!

Anonymous said...

A poem that has lasted. A metaphor for living, it's beautiful.

Norma said...

I need to clarify that I didn't take this photo. When I went into my file, I had 4 yellow rose photos, and this was the best, but I didn't record the origin, and don't remember. I also paint, so I may have downloaded for a reference. As beautiful as roses are, they have a tricky shape.

And Tia, thanks for the information on roses.

Regina said...

This was lovely, Norma, both the picture and the poem. I could feel the heartache in this, magnified by the pressed rose... and yes, poor Job- appropriate I would say!

Anonymous said...

Norma - I love this! It's great how each stanza is it own little capsule of meaning - but all facets of the rose, like each petal is its own entity and maintains it own beauty yet - all facets of the rose. My favorite, of course is the last, and I lvoe ending on Job for all the anguish inherent in that chapter of the Bible which turns into a test and a great's brilliant.

gautami tripathy said...

This is good. Each stanza gives us a new interpretation of the yellow rose.

Hokule'a Kealoha said...

I can smell the fragrance of the hot July day....wonderfull poem

Catherine said...

Job is appropriate, but I think Lamentations sounds equally good - it may not fit if you are counting syllables, but when I sounded it out in my head it didn't trip me up. A lovely photo and a lovely poem.

Jessica said...

There are some really surprising images in here -- the crimson fingers, the tears, and of course the petals pressed between the book of Job, at the end. Nice work!