Clusters of a Single Species

I have begun reading the work of American poet Philip Levine. This little bit from “Winter Words” collected in A Walk with Tom Jefferson is delightful in its exactitude and its animation:

Birthday tulips, twelve hothouse flowers
of royal purple on long stilt-like legs
that sag beside the frosted window.

I wonder what he might have thought about the season for the brilliant incandescence of amaryllis … we know what he does with paperwhites, the above lines continue:

Paper white narcissus uncoiled from bulbs
that had only polished stones to push
their green shoots through. You can grow up here.

I like to think that the here is both in the poem and the referent to a place imagined.

And so for day 1760

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