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A blade of grass -- Brian Patten

Guest poem submitted by Sam Dent:
(Poem #998) A blade of grass
 You ask for a poem.
 I offer you a blade of grass.
 You say it is not good enough.
 You ask for a poem.

 I say this blade of grass will do.
 It has dressed itself in frost,
 It is more immediate
 Than any image of my making.

 You say it is not a poem,
 It is a blade of grass and grass
 Is not quite good enough.
 I offer you a blade of grass.

 You are indignant.
 You say it is too easy to offer grass.
 It is absurd.
 Anyone can offer a blade of grass.

 You ask for a poem.
 And so I write you a tragedy about
 How a blade of grass
 Becomes more and more difficult to offer,

 And about how as you grow older
 A blade of grass
 Becomes more difficult to accept.
-- Brian Patten
Since you are now on the theme of love poetry, I must send you this one.  I
can't believe you have no Brian Patten yet, I hope this will encourage a few
people to track down his work.  He and Adrian Mitchell are, in my opinion,
the finest modern poets.  The beauty of this poem is in its simplicity, and
how the images seem to stay with you.


[Minstrels Links]

Comparison to Adrian Mitchell is high praise indeed; check out the following
poems on the Minstrels website to see what I mean:
Poem #28, To Whom It May Concern
Poem #95, Nostalgia - Now Threepence Off
Poem #211, The Oxford Hysteria of English Poetry
Poem #337, Jimmy Giuffre Plays 'The Easy Way'
Poem #397, Ancestors
Poem #623, Ten Ways to Avoid Lending Your Wheelbarrow to Anybody
Poem #810, Beatrix is Three
Poem #894, Watch Your Step - I'm Drenched

32 comments: ( or Leave a comment )

Iveson Sarah said...

I first came across this poem while studying for O level english, and it has remained my favourite ever since...such simplicity...perfect!

GW-Images said...

Why is this poem attributed to Brian Patten here and to Vashel Lindsey on another web site? Who is actually the author?

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