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Monday 28 November 2011

November Carnage

A rose exploded in the night.
It didn't die of drought or blight.
It detonated. Blew six others out of sight.
Further off, another four
were stripped of all their flesh:
red, white, white-splashed-with-red
and dusky blue, their petals lay
in wavy lines across the bed.

In contrast to their patterned fall
the bomber's body parts were blown
across the garden, side
to side and end to end
in random disarray. When blown apart,
the Rosa Mundi Bonaparte
left fragments everywhere:
on gravel, grass and paving stone,
as if four different winds had blown
together in a storm.

Strange thing: it was a cultured rose,
one steeped in Rosa lore - the very last
rose, you'd have thought
to be a home-grown terrorist.

One consolation we can take:
a quiet time of year,
the season almost done,
the population sparser then
than a few months before.
But had the bomber struck back then,
how changed the outcome could have been!


Brad said...

Wow! Not sure I can count myself a nearby rose... but I was something near enough to be completely blown away!

Brian Miller said...

really like the layers in this...something as unsuspecting as a rose becoming a terrorist...leads me to wonder just what i might be getting at...

Carl said...

Another thinker with great imagery. Thanks for a great read dave.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Your cool tone, the rhyme, and the rose imagery puts the carnage in a very clear focus. Very well done. K.

Mary said...

Even things or people of beauty can be guilty of evil deeds, it seems.

Titus said...

Loved this! You are very good at convincing me in the surreal.

ds said...

So unemotional, so chilling. So wonderful. Thank you. (I'll not look at a rose in the same way again)

The Noiseless Cuckooclock said...

great take on November and change.

The Noiseless Cuckooclock said...

dark imagery, well done.

Windsmoke. said...

Bonza imagery who would have thought a innocent looking rose could cause so much destruction, grief and mayhem :-).

Dulcina said...

Both terrific & terrible poetic report which doesn't make the evil fact lighter, on the contrary, it emphasizes cruelty at the most and its evil methods to achieve its macabre purposes.
When danger looks beautiful it's much more dangerous than an ugly one (same happens with women)
Rosa Mundi Bonaparte, good choice, Dave! To me, this is the clue of your poem.
Did you know that during the French Napoleonic wars the ships which were carrying Josephine's roses were allowed to pass the blockades?
Nowadays there are children and pregnant women moving drugs in their stomachs at the airports.
Little kids wearing bombs in market places.
Are monsters using innocence & beauty to cheat us? Can they be considered human beings so that the Law must apply human rights to them...? Where is the limit for them to be bad/smart and for us to be good/stupid?

Your roses' flesh,
where lies the heart
in one of them?

All your lines shine & strike the reader, but these are my favourite ones:
- red, white, white-splashed-with-red
and dusky blue, their petals lay
in wavy lines across the bed

- Strange thing: it was a cultured rose,
one steeped in Rosa lore - the very last
rose, you'd have thought
to be a home-grown terrorist

About the end, about the so-called consolation, why are we sorrier when thousands of innocent people die than when only one does? What matters is not the number, but the fact, man's cruelty, whatever the victims are involved in the tragedy.
A Jewish proverb says, "He who kills a person, kills the whole world; he who saves a person, saves the whole world."
Best wishes, Dave.

kaykuala said...

A great way of comparative narration. It gets one wondering which is which until the very end. Excellent verse!


Other Mary said...

That's why I like Pansies. Very well written, as usual, Dave.

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haricot said...

Time passing and nobody can't see it. Roses are visible and have enough beauty. As time goes by something change even in roses beauty...sometimes terrible change happens.

Dave King said...

Hi, Good to have your company and your thoughts. Much thanks for both.

I saw the petals from some roses blown something like this. It all began from there.

Thanks for saying this.

Helpful comment. thanks for it.

Mama Zen
Thank you.

Ah, ye canna go by the looks, thou knows!

I'm rather fond of the surreal. Thanks for the comment.

Ah, didn't mean to put anyone off roses per se!

The Noiseless Cuckooclock
Hi, good to have you back. Thank you.

So the perfect agent! Thanks.

Thank you so much for your brilliant critique. It was both helpful and a joy to read. I did not know about Josephine's roses, no.

I do take your end point about numbers, but here - as elsewhere in the poem - I was mainlytrying to echo the sentiments that one hears or reads in the media after an outrage. Comments about it being a busy or a quiet period are common.

I am also sympathetic to your point concerning human rights and how it applies - and maybe in certain circumstances should not apply - to terrorists.

I have said above (Brian) how the idea originated, but the driving force was that of evil wrapped in beauty and/or inncence.

Thanks again - greatly.

Thanks. Most instructive,

Other Mary
Thanks for this. Maybe I should write one about pansies...?

Hi Welcome. Very happy to have you. Thanks for commenting.

Very thought-provoking. Much obliged. You may have set something going!

Kass said...

Delightful poem!