Celebrate #NationalGardeningWeek This year’s theme is “the joy of gardening”. Today is RHS Garden Day. Day One. I will feature all your published/unpublished poetry/short prose/artworks about gardening including your favourite flowers, the gift of flowers, your lawn etc. Please include a short third person bio. This includes vegetables and fruit. What work have you created that celebrates growing and nurturing? Have you written about planting trees, planting seeds, harvest time, spring. About gardens through the seasons? What does your garden do for you? Have you seven poems/short prose/artworks so I can feature your creativity over the whole week, one per day?

Sissinghurst at Midsummer

A veil lifts between earth and sky,
Revealing a lush green paradise,
its mullioned windows thrown open
to the gardens….

Mood music captivates:
Harp song through tall grass,
bees crooning in lupin throats,
swallows darting overhead.
The ambiance is relaxing,
sight, smell and sound seamlessly
fused together in a heady symphony.
Bouquet of rose, lavender and herbs
tease the sharpening senses.
Crooked chimneys peer down onto
exquisite garden-rooms blooming
with a riot of colour.

Oast houses nestle in the shade
of the castle tower.
Along paved walks bemused statues
observe the constant parade of visitors,
all curious to experience this romantic
idyll created by Vita and Harold*….
An enchanted corner of Kent, wrapping
visitors in a cloak of midsummer magic.

*Vita Sackville West and Harold Nicholson, creators of Sissinghurst gardens

First published in my collection ‘Where Flora Sings’

-Margaret Royall

Cactus

Tiny white flowers
appear overnight like snowflakes
falling on holly or Christmas trees.

I dare not come close
to see if they have a scent.
Each spine is like a spindle,

its branches the towers
of a castle in a fairy-tale.
I feel like Sleeping Beauty

or should I say Snow White,
reluctant to take the proffered apple
as if knowing it was poisoned.

-Peter Donnelly

Daisies

Pluck all on the lawn, turn my back and more
appear. I should poison them all, be rid.
But, I do not want to open the door
of making our cats ill, which is sordid.

Whenever a child dies God sprinkles earth
with Daisies. Freya’s favourite flower.
I would slaughter innocents for the worth
of a pure lawn. It’s within my power

to purify the green destroy yellow.
I deem, dictate what’s a weed and what’s not.
Perhaps, I should rewild a bit, allow
Daisies in only one part of my plot.

Delusions of grandeur, an obsessive
space manipulator, an oppressive.

-Paul Brookes

Bio And Links

-Peter J Donnelly

lives in York where he works as a hospital secretary. He has a degree in English Literature and a MA in Creative Writing from the University of Wales Lampeter. He has been published in various magazines and anthologies including Dreich and Writer’s Egg, where some of these poems have previously appeared. Last year he won second prize in the Ripon Poetry Festival competition.

 –Margaret  Royall

has six books of poetry published. She has appeared widely in print, in webzines and  poetry anthologies. She has won or been short-listed in several competitions and her collection ‘Where Flora Sings’, published by Hedgehog Press, was nominated for the Laurel Prize in 2021. Her latest collection, ‘Immersed in Blue’ was published in January 2022 by Impspired Press. She leads a women’s poetry group in Nottinghamshire and takes part in open mic sessions online and in person. She is currently working on a third poetry collection.

Website: https://margaretroyall.com/ Twitter:@RoyallMargaret

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