Friday, May 20, 2011

Tulip Insurance

In spite of winterlike Wisconsin weather that has overstayed its welcome, we've been rewarded with plenty of spring flowers. In our tiny yard, I've planted my favorite Angelique tulips (on the right in this picture) in various spots, and some of them are blooming right now.



This year (again), rabbits (or maybe squirrels) ate all the flower buds in one patch and left me the empty stalks. Here's a poem I wrote one year after a fierce thunderstorm wiped out a whole flower bed full.

Aftermath

The storm that filled the birdbath
broke the tulips.
Their delicate pink frills were
never meant to bear the weight of
all that water crushing down.
If we had watched by lightning flare,
we might have seen them filled to overflowing,
dumping cupful after cupful
into sodden flower beds,
lashed by roughneck wind
until they snapped.
Like fragile crystal goblets
at a brawl for hooligans,
they never were intended for that rowdy scene.
The storm that filled the birdbath—
the brute that crashed the party—
smashed the stemware,
littering the lawn with ruffled shards.

Because our springs can be chilly, unpredictable, stormy, and subject to hungry predators, I've learned to back up my favorite flowers by planting them in more than one place. Each year, at least a few of them survive to thrill me with my favorite pink blossoms.

Today's Poetry Friday roundup is at The Drift Record.

JoAnn Early Macken

4 comments:

Carmela Martino said...

Terrific poem, JA! I especially like these lines:
>>Like fragile crystal goblets
at a brawl for hooligans,
they never were intended for that rowdy scene.<<
For some reason, the bunnies didn't eat my tulips this year, so I was able to truly enjoy them.

Mary Lee said...

I love the title of your post -- Tulip Insurance!

So true that we should never put all our treasures in one spot, or eggs in one basket, or tulips in one bed.

April Halprin Wayland said...

Wonderful! And yes, I love the line Carmela loves and also,

"The storm that filled the birdbath—
the brute that crashed the party—
smashed the stemware,
littering the lawn with ruffled shards."

Love the mixed images!

catherinemjohnson said...

Wonderful poem!