As ever, my last poem of April for Anannya

I’ll spare you the metaphors of flowers, we
Are all April phools after all. And I’ll desist
From images of gardens and blooming and
Other such, because this one is for Anannya
But also for all of you – all of us, who resist
The stifling of words, the impossibility of
Poetry. To all the pictures of loveliness
That we have sent each other, I add this,
Of lilies. Because they so proudly proclaim
So shamelessly confess to their beauty.
Like trumpets, each head, triumphant
In its glory – and yet, you can close
Your eyes and breathe in its story. Each
Unique, each like its other, they are a
Cluster of gratitude, a world together.


The lily and the amaltas – a May Day labour of love

Fill your lungs with marvel, a wonder
Full of exaltation. To breathe
Each open red heart into your own
A kind of beatitude. They toil not
Nor do they spin yet which of us is
Freed from this sin. I have other
Places I want to be and other flowers
I need to see other labours
That beckon to me so far away
Unreachable so deeply lodged within.
Hours spent in the work of hands when
Other homes and other lands bloom
Yellow, gold, and shades of fire.
Give me an ecstasy of scents or
Bring me a fiery magnificence
But grant me no special beneficence
From this cleaving desire.

Fanfare for all the helping hands

The lilies, like a brass band, march across
The living room, trumpeting their deliciousness
In brazen tones. This year the arch of
Seduction spans seas and souls, bringing
Love in pressurised litres, texts, and zoom – no
Lyrical love songs, no dulcet tones. I hear
The amaltas like a choir over a billion strong
Thundering in my heart, and in my ear
Blasts this unprecedented song, this
Unbridled declaration of the sweetness
That lies at the core. Louder than hate
And evil and maliciousness, prouder
Than the sentries guarding death’s door,