Poetry by Nadia Kingsley  —  Art by Chelsea-Geldean



the only plant

named after the month

in which it blooms – Hawthorn.

Spreading from Glastonbury Staff,

fast as a Redwing, tenacious

like gossip – its flowers,

with their five white petals

cupped for a fairy, are lunch

for a dormouse. Its leaves

are Bread and Cheese, an all-day

munch for moth larvae. Haw –

old word for hedge;

its thorn makes medicine

for its own pricking.

Barring it from our house,

Granny said it brings Death.

In that, lies this – the compound

that gives off its scent is also released

from rotting flesh.

“Shed not a clout ’til May is out “-

though with the calendar alteration

some time back, she can’t have been sure

what she meant. And we, in our youth,

on unseasonable April afternoons

would sunbathe right under her nose.

Nadia Kingsley runs Fair Acre Press in Shropshire, England.

She has project managed and written poetry in the performance

e-x-p-a-n-d-i-n-g: the history of the Universe in 45 minutes

which involves another poet, a musician and an astrophysicist

in a mobile planetarium dome.

This poem is part of an ongoing collaboration with a Devon herbalist

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Global artists and writers dedicated to sharing creativity around the world.

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