Monday, September 6, 2010

Tuesday's Poem: A Song of Spring


(to Anne)

in the bouncing kowhai
tui court, the snowball
tree sprouts green shoots
daphne scents the section
cat spends more time
outside, tulips sway in
their pots.

                a hurtle of wings
ignoring the gale, tui cavort

          it is the season
for swings and flings,
a ballerina dancing
to applause as off stage
an old troubadour expires

Harvey McQueen

I planned put up for today’s Tuesday Poem the previous blog. But re-reading it in ‘Goya Rules’ I came across this one, which I wrote last Sepember. It seemed apposite.

Things are the same outside but different. Tulips sway in their pots, change of colour but there’ve been tulips in those pots each spring for over twenty years. Bloom laden are the two daphne bushes. And tui drama on in the kowhai tree. Strong winds still blow. Minstrel winter is as ever reluctant to shuffle off the stage.

I’m a year older – that’s the big change. But as usual for this time of the year there is this sense of hope, joy and returning vitality.

Next spring? Ah! That’s another question.


  1. I like the strong sounds and rhythm of this poem, Harvey, which help evoke the strong vital sprouting, perching things you describe - the way the wings hurtle to the end of the line... I have just been reading the same sentiments in This Piece of Earth. Such an optimistic, life-affirming, lovely book. Would that you see another spring, Harvey.

  2. Tui as harbinger of spring -- very nicely observed. Passed beneath a canopy of crabapple the other day and bing-dong-glawk, there it was, bobbing amidst the pink. "Daphne scents the section," another delightful line.