Friday, March 28, 2014



The white flower dreamed
and I dreamed with her

a dream unclouded
tight woven, teased out,
tied in intention;
a landscape of alabaster designed
by the dark fingers of sleep;

a dream made to trace
our own face, our place.

I don't remember how
or why or who we were
only that it was most
that we be, that if only
 we moved together, she 

her numinous lumed petals and I
my levers and iron devices, all

all in the right order,
the whole yawing cosmos--
the gasp and sizzle
the drag and fly--
would shudder itself right

and we would have at last
the world that never was.

~March 2014

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Interpretations with Margaret: Flowers
The gifted Margaret Bednar (ArtHappens365) asks us to examine both 'the hidden and obvious' inner world of our favorite flower, about what its meaning to us might be, and explore it in writing. I seem to be still somewhat lost in my Jungian mesh of dreams, but when I looked, I did find a flower or two.

The header is a photo of the plant I love most in my garden, the narcissus Thalia, 'the joyous, the flourishing,' named after the muse of comedy and idyllic poetry, daughter of Zeus and the goddess of memory, Mnemosyne. The lower photo is of our native jimsonweed, whose leaves are poisonous to livestock and whose seeds are hallucinogenic.

Header: Narcissus 'Thalia'
Footer: native wild datura (jimsonweed)
Photos copyright joyannjones 2012-2014


  1. Dreams definitely have that sense of the possibility of rightness -- flowers actually seem to exhibit it when wide awake - or even in versions thereof--A very pretty and poignant poem--I especially love the alabaster design --it's not actually clear we'd like living in the petals--but in the dream all that can be fixed. Also the iron devices--such a good phrase--one thinks of the gardener as the potential torturer of plants! Or maybe putting braces on them like they used to on the poor polio children. Anyway--lovely. k.

  2. I love the way you have balanced your first two lines, Hedge. And the whole fall into the white dream of flowers.... I wish I had thought of something as amazing as that dream-like fantasy to write about, but I'm on the other end of the scale as far as inspiration is concerned.
    I so enjoyed the back and forth between the iron levers and silken petals.

  3. The gauzy, ethereal feel of this . . . very cool. This captures that dream place where everything (no matter how mad hatter) seems perfectly reasonable. Those last two stanzas are really outstanding.

  4. I'd just love to dream of this...sigh...such depth and, "a landscape of alabaster design" and "numinous lumed petals" and "all in the right order,/the whole yawing cosmos--"

    Awesome work, Hedge!!

  5. Love the sharing of an unclouded dream for those are the best kind and the juxtaposition of the softness of alabaster flower with the levers and iron devices.

  6. From the perfect title to the last line, I sifted down the screen in a dreamy haze. Beautiful, Hedge.

  7. To me, this expresses perfectly a yearning that we all seem to have for a better reality, almost a memory, of something sweeter, better, more rewarding, that we never actually knew or had, but that we hunger for anyway, as if it were always just out of reach or recollection. I adore 'the whole yawning cosmos...would shudder itself right'. God that's perfect, Joy.

  8. This is so lovely...If we could move in unison with flowers what a paradise the world would be.

  9. to be and move together...
    i think that is the the connection to nature and to the flower...
    perhaps if we took time to learn more of nature and put our hands to creation
    again instead of artificial entertainment, we would find the world
    a bit better....smiles.

    have a great weekend joy

  10. a dream made to trace
    our own face, our place.

    Dreams are that personal. One cannot expect that dreams affect others but only oneself provided one is good at interpreting them. But interpretation is always subjective. Nicely Joy!


  11. There's a sweet union of sames here, the paramour as the amour inside the armor, one's shadow self revealed in the sweet fields of dreaming ... Perhaps the only safe place to reveal it is in that garden bower where, as far as I can read it, no fallen human is allowed, no dangerous others or what is worst within ourselves. The luxe whiteness of the petals reminds me of Mary Oliver's ecstasies, but the speaker's cooler affinities (those "levels and iron devices") strike a more perfect balance between, perhaps, mind and heart, or art and heart. And only in the poem of the dream ... It struck me yesterday as I thought about your triptych that we know so little really about dreaming, a lack which goes over the cliff when we trying to understand death. Poetry is such a powerful, albeit insufficient, ladder to those places ... Very sweet, clear poem.

    1. Well, the garden is not as idyllic as we make it in symbol--part of that parable no doubt of being thrown from the paradise where everything perfect and beautiful dropped in our laps effortlessly--in the real garden, there is always a killer of some sort lurking--the choking weed, the incurable virus, the overwhelming infestation of locusts or worms, so the flower too has her dark other, her Nemesis, but not in this poem, because it is about things coming right. In these last few years of my life I often have this dream--the plot and setting are arbitrary, but the feeling of resolution and meaning is consistently strong. I tried to convey it here in these clumsy metaphors, I agree that it is about integration, but not sure it is merely mind and heart, though they are certainly the most prominent players--I think there is a lot more sewing and mending of the self life has tattered going on.. As you say, dreaming remains a book in another language, or maybe in many, which we laboriously try to translate. Thanks for your thoughts and insights here, B--they are valuable, and as always, thanks for reading.

  12. The first lines captured me. Beautiful poem.

  13. There is a yellow blooming plant in the horse pasture that has always thrilled me - I love the way it rambles along the brush line of the forest and creeps into the fields. Just found out the other day it is poisonous to horses and they can die if they eat it (they rarely do).

    "the gasp and sizzle
    the drag and fly--
    would shudder itself right"…

    When I am way out in the field, either riding (or walking to get him because my horse refuses to greet me) it is so quiet and I really can imagine the flowers and trees and tall grasses (I always watch out for snakes!) inviting us to just rest and dream with them. I used to when I was young. I would read for hours with the smell, bugs, sun - my little "fort" and I was safe, happy, carefree. Free to dream. I also LOVE the word alabaster …

    Thanks for writing and playing to my prompt - I thought you would enjoy the flower theme.

  14. what an opening couplet, and mirrored / brought to flower in the final pair - the dream (that never was)


"We make out of the quarrel with others, rhetoric, out of the quarrel with ourselves, poetry." ~William Butler Yeats

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