I take back what you have stolen and in your languages I announce I am now nameless.
My true name is a growl.
Margaret Atwood

20 June 2018

what is the grass?

what is the grass? 

a blade or 3 grouping but not yet a quorum,
intones spring in yellow-green hues
until the density pushes
from below, seeking the above, the air -
rent from the rotting flesh of bones,
the skeletal remains of yesterday's decay -
all those days taken too soon
from the sweet blooms bursting
crushed red sunsets in summer's heating waves -
as fall drops her petticoats and bares her legs,
enticing the last of one's dreams before the harsh wind's call -
oh what cruel master is winter -
so what is grass?
the skeletal remains of all that came before,
pushing back ,
seeking air to breathe and wave free
in wildflower crowns and dandelion wings -


yes, grass is green and tastes of all things,
and if you might venture to step into its spring,
you will feel the pulse quicken -
breathe deeply for it reeks in reels
and listen hard, for the songs, yet to emerge,
not dirges of the haunted souls,
but rather the brawling cries of rallying up
to nest high in a sky waiting with the embrace of a lover -
in whose arms you once knelt,
bellying up to bestow the fire of the cords that joined you two,
if only for a brief burst, seam against seed -
cleaved wide open -
so taste of this - again -
what is the grass, then, if not desire and original sin -

inspired by Karin's prompt @ Real Toads: What the?
and inspired by these lines taken from Whitman's Leaves of Grass

A child said, What is the grass? fetching it to me with full
How could I answer the child?. . . .I do not know what it
 is any more than he. 
And now it seems to me the beautiful uncut hair of graves.  
-Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass


  1. This is so lush, (and very Whitmanesque in that way of his, with great simplicity) I can remember my bare feet and the way grass can kiss them, stroke them as it lets them go--sensuous, but also there's the cerebral at play here, too, in the very question of mortality and regeneration itself, even if the answer returns you to the senses in that wonderful ending quintet of lines. I liked this very much, willow. Thanks for the pleasure it gave me.

    1. I'm glad that it brought up some wonderful memories - nothing like recalling the senses to bring some relief and grounding.

  2. so what is grass?
    the skeletal remains of all that came before,
    pushing back ,
    seeking air to breathe and wave free
    in wildflower crowns and dandelion wings -

    This section, to me, is a poem within a poem. Altogether, an inspiring piece!

    1. thanks Kerry!
      I admit, I like the lines you've quoted very much too - brings a smile to my face and heart ~ LOL - sometimes I surprise myself in my "innocent wonder" ...

  3. I took a page from your book and have been sitting with this one a while. It is SO good. Seems like you reined yourself in a little bit, and the result is glorious. Don't get me wrong, love your high energy writing! But the little bit of reining in makes this poem so clear, and elegant, and amazing. Fall with her petticoats was my favorite part. Not sure I like "original sin" at the very end--that seems to make a gorgeously secular and natural poem smack of bible school and scowling headmasters from the 1700's, but this is nonetheless my favorite poem of yours--it really blew me away and thank you for writing it and letting us read something so excellent. In a sea of "my haiku about warts" this is so refreshing.

    ps--you okay? when u go silent I fret about u.

    1. thanks for your thoughts - I'm a moody bitch who can write as the wind blows - raging or simply calm - and so it is ...
      sometimes the surprises are endless ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. Wow! Tour de force writing. I love the way you weave this.


thanks for sharing your thoughts, I greatly appreciate it.