Friday 1 June 2012

Featured Poem for June 2012 - 'Daffodils II: The Revenge' by Joel Stickley

I wandered lonely as a clown,
all bulbous feet and scary laugh,
when all at once I slowed right down
as something florid blocked my path.

They stood together, stem by stem,
and barred my way with sharpened shoots.
Transfixed by fear, I stared at them –
their bobbing heads, their grasping roots.

'You again,' I grimly muttered,
shuddering and stepping back.
Above my head, the gas lamp guttered,
spluttered out and fell to black.

As darkness gripped me, so did panic.
I heard a hundred petals rustle.
I turned and sprinted, letting manic
energy fill every muscle.

But with each pounding step I took,
that yellow mob was still behind.
I stumbled on, afraid to look,
as thoughts of stamens filled my mind.

At last I saw a source of shelter,
dived inside and held my breath.
The door clicked closed behind. I felt a
fearful calm descend like death.

Then crashing through the window pane
they came, relentless as the tide.
Through shattered glass that fell like rain,
they cast their grasping tendrils wide.

Daffodils! O, daffodils!
Those foul narcissi haunt my dreams –
I wake at dead of night with chills
and see a perianth that gleams.

In vacant or in pensive mood,
they flash upon my inward eye
and all the bliss of solitude
is gone as helplessly I lie

and wait in fear for them to strike
and waft their high and sickly stench.
They dumbly nod their heads just like
the Liberal Democrat front bench.

Useless yellow bastards, them –
they're poisonous and do no good.
They dance before me, stem by stem,
and mock the dreams of childhood.

So take me now, O daffodils,
and prove old Mr Byron right.
You're puerile and your presence kills
all poetry with cant and trite.

© Joel Stickley 2012. All rights reserved.  Please do not use without the poet's permission.

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