Thursday, 8 June 2017


" ... The roses
Had the look of flowers that are looked at"
wrote TS Eliot in Burnt Norton.  I imagine roses, wet with dew, leaning over a path and saying "Look at us!"  The roses in my garden and in my neighbours' gardens have been doing this for a few weeks now.

This week, somewhat less showily, the wild roses have opened in the hedges, including the boundary hedge between my garden and the field.  The dog rose is pale pink and bleaches as it ages (rapidly).

Our village will be holding a flower festival this week end.  The roses will be on show.

White roses

The white jar on the dressing table
fits my palm like a shell.

A scent of powder, rattling
trinkets - pins, buttons, rings.

On the lid porcelain roses,
glazed as if dew-rinsed.


Summer musk fills the air - white roses
tumbling over the rusted shed.

One flower opens and another falls

pale petals I could dip in sugar,
place on my tongue.


Old pottery at high water mark,
all pattern erased.  Far out

the ocean gathers sea flowers,
balances blooms on it surface.

Waves curl and stumble,
scatter white roses on the shore.

© Mary Robinson 2015

(First published in Cadence Autumn 2015)

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