Tuesday, April 21st, 1.45 pm

DSCF3115Color has thrust itself on the landscape
In quick short jabs—hyacinth blue, daffodil yellow, robin red
If I had a net I could reel in the clouds like a flock of white doves
The mantra begins—mint oregano raspberry sage

Sitting amongst dandelions
I dream of wine, mellow and ripe
The sweetness of honey on my tongue
And an orange tree grown from seed.

I feel the upward thrust through the soles of my feet
First rhubarb nubbins pushing out of the dirt
First purple violets in the lawn
First handsome dandelion by the garden door.

The old cat knows it
She’s been prancing up the black walnut like a skittish kitten
Squirming luxuriously in the new grass
Rubbing her chin against some smell that I can’t even get a whiff of.

The calm air is painted with birdsong
Sun dries the ink on the page
The tug of war between Sun and Moon
Pulls the slow earth from winter to spring.



25 thoughts on “Tuesday, April 21st, 1.45 pm

  1. Murtagh's Meadow

    Lovely observations Melissa. I’ve been trying the last couple of weeks to capture a violet but they always end up out-of-focus or not that beautiful violet blue – you on the other hand have captured it perfectly.

    1. Melissa Shaw-Smith Post author

      Thanks, Karina. We have several kinds of violets here, each more beautiful than the last–even a small yellow one!

    1. Melissa Shaw-Smith Post author

      Thanks, Curt. She’s a true spring kitten. Her mother was a stray who adopted us by giving birth to five kittens in our basement one fine April day.

    1. Melissa Shaw-Smith Post author

      Thanks, Roger. I find myself muttering that mantra when I water the garden–which I’ve been doing a lot lately, sad to say, due to an extremely hot, dry spring for the northeast US. Guess it’s better than singing Simon and Garfunkel songs and disturbing the wildlife!

  2. Sunshine Jansen

    It makes me happy that you also welcome the humble violet and dandelion! I’m surrounded by chemically maintained lawns and disapproving looks… But I also happen to know there’s a hobby beekeeper in the neighborhood, and her livestock is most appreciative. 🙂

    1. Melissa Shaw-Smith Post author

      To heck with the neighbors, I say. Give me bees any day! Thanks for reading, Sunshine, and enjoy your garden.

  3. Virginia Duran

    Love that this poem is so sensorial. One goes from touch to taste. Love honey by the way, so it brought me happiness 🙂

    1. Melissa Shaw-Smith Post author

      Thanks, Virginia. Last spring I actually gathered thousands of dandelion blossoms and made wine with a friend. We used honey as the sweetener. I should be just about ready to sample!

    1. Melissa Shaw-Smith Post author

      Thanks, Suzy. I do get a bit carried away at this time of year. Winter is a very long six months with us and we all get a bit punch drunk when spring finally arrives.

  4. Graeme Sandford

    ‘If I had a net I could reel in the clouds like a flock of white doves,’

    This caught my eye. I think that if you had a net you could ‘haul’ in the clouds. Just a thought,

    This was lovely imagery and visual writing; the pace was just right and the plants and herbs caught the scent wonderfully – thank you – G:)

    PS (just for info) you can also have:

    a bevy of doves
    a dole of doves
    a flight of doves
    a piteousness of doves
    or, a pitying of doves

    Who knew? G:)

    1. Melissa Shaw-Smith Post author

      Thanks for the tip, Graeme, you’re absolutely correct. Often these are early drafts that I continue to work on, so all feedback is appreciated.


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