Fleurs de Mai

Katinka Matson1Peg Duthie 


a sprawl of tulips
sassily yellow

distant kin
to the antique gown
that once was white

petals so bright
against the mottled stone
its text all but gone

the chiseled lines
now softer than the folds
of a flower or a dress

Katinka Matson2Robert McDonald 

Dear Jelly Jar Glass of Water,

I want to be
the geranium

growing catfish





Katinka Matson6J. Bradley 

#safetytipsfordating – Flowers

Avoid the supermarket, the parade of sour petals. Take a moment to tear yourself away from generating an animated gif of someone not you doing something you would do. Caress the arrangement on the monitor without smudging it.

Don’t calculate the outcome based on the bouquet arriving on her doorstep, his office cubicle. Think of it as a hello, as an ‘I miss you’, as a thank you. Save love until it matters, until you can say it by actually saying it.


Katinka Matson3Paulette Beete 

Poem Left in His Pocket
on a Page Torn from a Book

I admit you still feel strange to me
in the most ordinary of ways:

how, for example, you look at me
as if I were enough or

how when I put the white tulips you sent
on the kitchen window sill and wait

for the sturdy light of morning
each yellow heart glows.


Katinka Matson7Richard Fox

I’ve an April Blindness

Over the stoop, a
rambling rose
arrives in June.

Emptily I fill with
green from the wing
of a pigeon or

the idle hands
of holly, though
only leaves are thus.

I take red
(for pistils & stamens)
from the ocean

because it is so rare
coming from it.
There’s a yellow

I’ve been working on
until there will never be
another yellow.

Katinka Matson4

Luisa A. Igloria 


Walking to the waterfront in hopes
we might watch the fireworks show tonight,

one of us kicked aside the sun-bleached
carcass of a bracken leaf. In the pagoda

garden, fireflies lit the ochre undersides
of leaves on the Japanese maple. Heat

hung like a bower of creosote flowers
in bloom, presaging rain. And sure enough

thunder rippled in the sky across the water,
rain came down in sheets. The only

smoldering on the horizon, a barb
of ragged light every now and then,

outlining the spires of ships. We sat
at an upstairs table in the crowded

restaurant where people had rushed
for shelter. Someone pushed open

a sliding door on the veranda and the cooled
air came rushing in, musty as the planks

on the wooden pier. But somewhere in the currents,
a vein of remembered scent; and I said, Gardenia.

[first published at Via Negativa, one of the Morning Porch poems]

Katinka Matson8

Carolyn Sheehan Gandouin 


Painstaking fingernails slit the stalk;
a second daisy’s threaded through the first,
then a third, a fourth, a fifth;

hypnotic, the chain of scrappy flowers
growing, stalk-length by stalk-length;

and my girl’s face a white moon of concentration,
full bent on her task as if destined
by her stock-pile of waning daisies;

the chain extends, but the field is still buzzing;
she trails the train of common weed
and winds it round me, neck to knee;

bound in a daisy chain, which she links,
finally, fragile, near my heart. She tells me she loves me,
and will never let me go.

I daren’t move. I am bound by love,
and dread to break its thin and fragile chain.


Katinka Matson5The fantastic flower photography you see here is by Katinka Matson.

Please click on each poet’s name to see her or his solo feature at Escape Into Life.

More flowery stuff at EIL:

May Flowers 

Sergio Lopez 

Sarah K. Byrne 

Margriet Smulders 

Susan Jamison 

Stasia Burrington 

Maria Oliva Tyra 

Maria Oliva Tyra in EIL Store 

4 responses to “Fleurs de Mai”

  1. […] I have a poem about flowers over at Escape Into Life, which you can read here. […]

  2. Carol Berg says:

    Gorgeous!!! Both the poems and the art!

  3. […] Bannister, Alexandra Seidel, Francis W. Alexander, N.E. Taylor, Beth Cato, Genevieve MacKay, Peg Duthie, Adrienne Odasso, Romie Stott, Paridhi Agarwal, S. Brackett Robinson, Alicia Cole, Ross Balcom, […]

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.