Picture of Vera Jane Cook

Vera Jane Cook

Chatter Creek Cottage: Lilacs

I can’t help thinking about poetry when I see these lovely lilacs that grow in our side garden. When I was a teenager I loved poetry, most particularly Victorian poets like Shelly, Byron and Robert and Elizabeth Browning. I can still sit and read poetry aloud until all hours of the night. I love poetry because it takes me to a place of solitude, a place of stillness, a place where images are vivid and my love for life is heightened. I remember standing at the top of a castle and looking down on London many years ago. All I could utter was: “Dear God, the very houses seem asleep and all that mighty heart is lying still.” I stole the words of a poet to express what I felt in that moment. The poem is by William Wordsworth.

I wish I could find the words and the metaphors to describe how much I love lilacs but not a crime to write bad poetry. The only way I can say it:

Lilac tree, your subtle scent, your regal reach

Oh, Where did you come from?

Was it a genie that brought you here or a fairy gnome?

Perhaps the earth beneath?

Your vibrant lilac flowers

are music to my soul

And every mile away I walk

Your colors I behold

I dare not touch your fragile song

that finds me in my sleep

and keeps me at your beck and call

where the days do linger deep

Now every sigh and tender kiss

Are carried in your breath

I will take you with me

Far beyond the day of death

My senses drink your endless air

Perfumed with taste so sweet.

I will do your bidding

As the lilac sky retreats