in anticipation

Kim Briggeman 1955 (Deer Lodge, Montana)



When you see your first buttercup – oh! heresy! –pick it.
 
Hold it in your palm. Notice what your hand looks like.
Consider it against broken clouds, the history of your town,
war.
 
Questions:
Sixteen galaxies away, would your buttercup mean the same?     
                                                         
Did Jesus pick the “little frogs” in hills above Nazareth,
run home to organize with stubby fingers
in an earthen vessel for Mom?
 
Or young Schweitzer, in the Alsace-Lorraine --
Ehrfurcht vor dem Leben -
even then the seeds germinating toward
charged and tortured reverence of life?
 
What about Quixote?
Did he pick buttercups before he got the rap?

Beelzebub, until he got too fat?
 
Pluck a petal.  Feel remorse?
Would a second make it easier?
 
Every part of a buttercup is toxic:
the green refuge of sepals,
each he-man stamen brandishing
its torch of pollen sacs,
even the glossy petals, five or,
rarely, six, unvarnished in their
waxen star-struck power.
 
Ingestion of too many can cause colic,
diarrhea, hypocrisy or insight.
Too few and you’ll find yourself
right back at the top of this poem.

About this poem

Inspired years ago by March in Montana.

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Submitted by klbrig on April 09, 2022

Modified on March 05, 2023

1:02 min read
3

Quick analysis:

Scheme X AXB CX XXX XXXX XX X XD XCXXBXD AXXX
Closest metre Iambic pentameter
Characters 1,133
Words 209
Stanzas 10
Stanza Lengths 1, 3, 2, 3, 4, 2, 1, 2, 7, 4

Kim Briggeman

Western Montana native, retired newspaperman. more…

All Kim Briggeman poems | Kim Briggeman Books

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