Les Sylphides & Other Poetry
from a Photograph
Flesh longed, at last, to be so impregnated and so inseminated, like a flower is pollinated by the breeze … (Or bees).
So, too, the heart called out for deeper comfort and then man’s soul called out for something more after the body had been violated and then the mind left easy on that score.
We are all flowers the sunlight cherishes, our styles made sensitive to every stigma along the towpath, and beneath the trees.
Beside the willows, and upon the shore, we gasp for shade and animal fulfillment in every way, on every outraged floor, yet never shall we know such perfect ease.
Featured in Issue Two of New Lyre Magazine
In everything one sees some trace of evil
and almost nothing is that innocent:
a flower, maybe, a wounded birdsong, death …
Death is more innocent than anything.
The innocence of children is already
as tainted as their parents' love must prove
and innocence is like a flower that wilts
and then is torn to pieces by the maelstrom
or drowns in tears of incandescent sorrow
since each such yesterday exacts tomorrow.
I passed from innocence to something worse
who sought the upper slopes of perfect goodness
but found instead a tangled thicket, where
I could not even breathe for lack of air.
John H.B. Martin is a poet who lives in London, England. He is a graduate of London University and Australia National University and has been writing for many decades. He has written four novels and is working on a fifth. His magnum opus is a six-volume epic poem. Most of his work is yet to be published.