Some Water Lilies I Used to Know

 

I came to the pond

to love the unseen—

the cosmos 

and all its citizens 

under the dozing water 

and I remember the first time 

I found their gifts

to the air-breathing world:

some paper angels 

impeccably folded

 

and unfolded 

that in silence 

sang as if it were

the Resurrection, 

 

and they drew the breath 

from everything 

around me 

with their impossible 

softness 

and even the turtles 

in their personal caves

and the copperhead

that understood the rules and 

stayed on its side of the reeds 

could not take my eyes off 

the baby doll pink 

tucked inside 

unearthly white fabric—

 

new landscapes

on the story-book islands

where amazing things 

must happen,

where fairy-sized pools

shivered from sprinkles of

my powdery afternoon

 

when I learned how easy it

is to get happiness right

and how fears look so small

next to porcelain pink and

slow-breathing white

and the antics of

dragonflies.

 

Life was one sprawling

present moment

until I went away to join

the mortal world,

 

and after a long journey

through its furnace of

absurdities

and the temporary insanity

of wanting more,

 

I decided to walk again

toward the fairy lands

where dragonflies 

were certainly

loafing in midair 

and perhaps a gnome was planting

tiny turnips next to 

a rhinestone pond,

 

but most important: 

the candy-colored festivals

on their pleasure islands

were in the flower of their

succulent youth.

 

I couldn't miss a thing! And I

hurried to the event. Then stopped.

And stared. And stared. 

A sign glowered like a sentry

with guns and sticks and surly eyes:

"No Trespassing"

 

Someone had bought 

my companions

and their frothy metaphors,

their soft-spoken counsel,

their biblical parables

and letters from the other side

 

and yes, I was allowed 

to stand by the creek

and listen to its rocky muttering,

 

but my origami stars, my birds in

full bloom, my sages . . .

 

snatched up in a land grab

and hidden in someone's

well-mannered yard while the

shifty-eyed copperheads,

the dragonflies,

the crotchety turtles

were doing what they do

without me.

 

And desire slithered

like the wet branches

 

and I swore if I could

return to that fragment

of a moment when I

first met the still doves,

I would chisel it into

my memory 

and speak to them like

a crazy wild woman

at one with the black soup

of frogs

and secret cities,

 

and I would become

opal linen

and sun.

 

Patricia Joan Jones

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

View patriciajj's Full Portfolio
dannigirl933's picture

This first tanza had me

This first tanza had me hooked; these words are stellar

 

"I came to the pond

to love the unseen—

the cosmos 

and all its citizens 

under the dozing water 

and I remember the first time 

I found their gifts

to the air-breathing world:

some paper angels 

impeccably folded"

 

I was in this, from top of the screen to the bottom. Your talent shines in this as well as those I am now reading from you. "well done you" I'm a new fan


Daniella Nikolayeva

patriciajj's picture

I can't thank you enough for

I can't thank you enough for taking the time to read and leave such thrilling feedback. I'm certainly a fan of your work, so it's a great encouragement to read your generous comments. My deep appreciation. 

Spinoza's picture

especially love this

and they drew the breath

from everything

around me

with their impossible

softness

 

… I especially love this.

patriciajj's picture

Thank you for your

Thank you for your encouraging feedback. Patricia

Cascade's picture

This is amazing ! It's really

This is amazing ! It's really good to see you sharing your mystical, magical, mind with us again, dear poetess Smile I hope you're working on that book!

patriciajj's picture

Thank you, my talented

Thank you, my talented friend, for that beautiful encouragement. It meant the world to me. Patricia

Starward's picture

You deploy words with such

You deploy words with such adroit skill to create striking imagery, and that imagery gives the poem's meaning a profound depth.


Starward

patriciajj's picture

I can't thank you enough for

I can't thank you enough for your amazing feedback and for not just reading my work, but looking deep within it. I'm grateful and honored. Patricia

Starward's picture

Your work is really great!

Your work is really great!


Starward

patriciajj's picture

Thank you! I value your

Thank you! I value your opinion and enjoy your work as well. Patricia