Tuesday, November 06, 2012

TUESDAY POEM - Disturbed Earth by Margaret Atwood

Detail from a work in progress - Oil on Paper - 2012

                           DISTURBED EARTH

                           Disturbed earth: some plants sprout quickly in it.
                           Sow thistles come to mind.
                           After you've wrenched them out
                           they'll snake back underground
                           and thrust their fleshy prickled snouts in
                           where you'd intended hostas.

                           Hawkweed will do that. Purslane. Purple vetch.
                           Marginals, hugging ditches,
                           flagrant with seed,
                           strewing their paupers' bouquets.

                           Why is it you reject them,
                           them and their tangled harmonies
                           and raffish madrigals?
                           Because they thwart your will.

                           I feel the same about them:
                           I hack and dig,
                           I stomp their pods and stems,
                           I slash and crush them. Still,

                           suppose I make a comeback -
                           a transmutation, say -
                           once I've been spaded under?
                           Some quirky growth or ambush?

                           Don't search the perennial border:
                           look for me in disturbed earth.

                           Margaret Atwood
                           from The Door

This week's editor on the Tuesday Poem hub is Seattle-based poet Therese Clear 
with March 6, 1890: Eugene Schieffelin Releases 80 Starlings in Central Park 
by Holly J. Hughes

Please click on the quill. 


  1. Not one for the debutant entrance, party dress, pearls, corsage, appropriate escort. With luck, grace and tenacity, we arrive nonetheless, as ourselves. What a splendid choice of poem and more glorious work in progress. This world is no place for the faint of heart. xo