'This bowl, life, that we fill and fill.'
This lovely new poem by Carol Ann Duffy featured as The Guardian's Saturday Poem this week. It was written to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Charleston festival, which is held at the former home of the Bloomsbury artists Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant. (See more details here: www.charleston.org.uk.)
Its language as always, is lilting and lovely, perfectly expressing the dreaminess of the setting and the message behind it.
Lessons in the Orchard - Carol Ann Duffy
An apple's soft thump on the grass, somewhen
in this place. What was it? Beauty of Bath.
What was it? Yellow, vermillion, round, big, splendid;
already escaping the edge of itself,
like the mantra of bees,
like the notes of rosemary, tarragon, thyme.
Poppies scumble their colour onto the air,
now and there, here, then and again.
the heart's impulse to cherish; thus,
a woman petalling paint onto a plate –
cornflower blue –
as the years pressed out her own violet ghost;
that slow brush of vanishing cloud on the sky.
And the dragonfly's talent for turquoise.
And the goldfish art of the pond.
And the open windows calling the garden in.
This bowl, life, that we fill and fill.