Friday, October 23, 2015

Poetry Friday

Flickr Creative Commons Photo by Dave Lawler

Please Don't
by Tony Hoagland

tell the flowers—they think
the sun loves them.
The grass is under the same
simple-minded impression

about the rain, the fog, the dew.
And when the wind blows,
it feels so good
they lose control of themselves

and swobtoggle wildly
around, bumping accidentally into their
slender neighbors.
Forgetful little lotus-eaters,

hydroholics, drawing nourishment up
through stems into their
thin green skin,

high on the expensive
chemistry of mitochondrial explosion,
believing that the dirt
loves them, the night, the stars—

Oops. I think it's too late. Our first killing frost has told the flowers the cold hard truth of it all. (But don't you love how Tony Hoagland describes them: "solar-powered / hydroholics"?)

Jama has the roundup today at Jama's Alphabet Soup. Next week, Jone will have the roundup at Check it Out.


  1. "swobtoggle wildly" "mitochondrial explosion" and "hallucination of happiness" what more could one ask for in a poem?

  2. Totally agree with Diane. I love the words and also the joy in this poem. A great way to start a Friday! Thank you!

  3. "Tell the flowers-they think the sun loves them." I love that line and this poem. Great post. I posted one of my favorites on my blog today, "A Valentine for Ernest Mann"

  4. "solar-powered hydroholics" -beautiful word-weaving Mary Lee. Thank you for sharing the poem. My flowers are still vibrant, albeit wild in their expanding reach. I changed to mums to keep with the season but took the perennials from my pots and planted them to see if they will greet the sun next year.

  5. I love it! Thank you so much for sharing it. I think I want to memorize it. Swobtoggle!

  6. Exquisite poem. Don't think I've ever encountered "swobtoggle" before. Wonderful. Love Hoaglund's work.

  7. Anonymous1:09 PM

    That is really lovely. :) Happy Friday!

  8. Well, if "swobtoggle" is not the best way to describe tall skinny flowers swaying and flailing about in the breeze, I don't know what is! And don't tell the children either... for they are convinced also. Can't say as I blame them. I think it may be true!

  9. Doesn't the sun loves the flowers and the grass? I'm not sure Tony Hoagland can convince me otherwise, even with swobtoggling mitochondrially explosive evidence.

  10. "Swobtoggle" is my new favorite word. I must find an excuse to "swobtoggle wildly." And this: "all Dizzy/
    Gillespie with the utter/sufficiency of everything. O.M.G. How good does it get?

  11. Gladly reading this in sunny, warm Florida, Mary Lee.

    Appreciations for bringing a new-to-me garden poem.
    And that word "swobtoggle." That's a keeper!

  12. Love "swobtoggle wildly"! And "Please don't tell..." is a great poetry stem. I need to make note of this one. Thanks, Mary Lee!

  13. I love how mitochondrial explosion can fit so nicely into a poem like this!

  14. What a great point of view for a poem.

  15. Anonymous6:12 AM

    There is so much to love about this poem! I think I'll read it again and marvel at its exquisite language. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Anonymous5:59 PM

    There is so much to love about this poem, Mary Lee. And also your 'cold hard truth' line. :) Methinks I might share this little number with some science teachers. :)

  17. Yes! If only the flowers didn't know they were supposed to hide for a spell. If only they would stay innocent and unaware. Thank you for sharing. God bless you!


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