The Path of a Primrose (for Kenneth Patchen)

MICHAEL HOROVITZ


Soft leafwomb unfurls
my yelloween song


...I grew up with the grass by night
and nearly took fright
seeing starlings sip dew
from the buttercup mead


but their water'd lips prime
the day of my night



...I glimpsed a white star-spray
surging the hedgerow


and forget-me-not, ladysmock
wafting in the breeze - 

a timid mouse darts near whispering
the plough stole my tail
and gave it over to a farmhand
who chucked it aside
                    as of no account
for his horse to get bellyache
and reward his master with blear bad service



...sisterly celandines spared by the blade
swing a new tail together
but mousey scampers off to a puddle
splash and squeaks and suds
at their smiling heads -

the mossy beds all about here
beam with my familiars

our gold pollen swells
plush pride of the nursery



till I curl up to sleep
and dream the thorns
off the wild rose on earth

from my prim heaven

Tribute to Kenneth Patchen