It's easy now to read about them-distanced
In time and place and mind through almost four
Long-dead centuries, when one brown, thin-
Wrapped bulb might buy a house, a ship, or more;
It's harder to remember a mere five
Decades back-swift breath to history-and
Wattled white cement twining along pine
Planks an equal breadth above moist brown sand;
And perfect tulips one by one, nodding
Staid humility to God-gaudy splashes,
Golden, purple, blood-streaked or pied, adding
Heat and flame to sunlight's vibrant slashes,
Waiting all, for lopping-proud errant knaves-
And final rest upon our fathers' graves.
Copyright © Michael R. Collings, 2004. All Rights Reserved.