Poet and essayist Dawn Potter founded this archive as a way to organize her commentary on Milly Jourdain's poetry, which, at the suggestion of biographer Hilary Spurling, she is gradually reprinting online. If you have more information about Milly Jourdain's life or work, please be in touch.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
First published on December 5, 2009
Here is today's Milly Jourdain poem, though I'm not sure all this sensitive springtime stuff is good for us at this waning time of the year.
A Purple Crocus
A purple crocus like a precious cup
Shining as silver in the cold grey light,
Has pushed its way above the winter grass.
Hidden, and waiting in it shadowed depths
Until the sun shall touch the purple brim,
There is a tender tongue of burning fire.
Now the harsh wind has blown the flower down;
Its eyes are closed, broken its milk-white stem;
But here, inside my room, it lives again.
There's no doubt that she's got a few too many word bundles (see my Olive Kitteridge post on my main blog for more about this): "shadowed depths, "burning fire." The "lives again" ending is rather saccharine. But the first stanza is delicate and lovely; "tender tongue" is also beautiful. If you ran a literary magazine, would you accept this poem? I'm not sure what I would do. Probably I wouldn't. I think I would read it twice, though.