01 April 2008

Une Poisson d'Avril for Garden Bloggers Muse Day

We all know how TS Eliot begins his monumental poem The Waste Land; even those who don’t know the poem (or understand it, and don’t worry if you don’t!) know these oft quoted words:

April is the cruelest month, breeding
lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
memory and desire, stirring
dull roots with spring rain.

Given that we’ve all had a long, tiresome winter (some of us longer and more tiresome than others) but that we’ve finally made it out of Farch, I thought about rewriting Eliot’s poem. However, it is 434 lines long, an astonishing miasma of satire, allusions, prophesy, wistfulness and dread.

While words do come easily to me, especially when galloping on about plants or cats or books or gardens, I don’t feel quite up to that monumental a task.

So instead, submitted for your consideration, gentle readers, my offering for Garden Bloggers Muse Day, and also the day of Poisson d’Avril:

April is the foolish month, breeding
cattle out of great pumpkins, mixing
skunk cabbages and Indian artifacts, stirring
Daffogerbera roots with endless rain.

Happy Muse Day, all...if you want me, I'll be bottling up the latest precipitation and getting ready to sell it as blue poppy fertilizer.


  1. Jodi, that's quite the face kitty is pulling. Was it a comment on the weather? Thank you so much for stopping by our blog. I'm off from work today, the sun is shining and I'm off on a quest to track down some achlys triphylla for the shade garden. Can't think of a more perfect dayf! --Curmudgeon

  2. Jodi, I am sure if anyone could re-write Eliot's The Wasteland, you could. And I'm sure I'd like it and understand it better! (And this is from an English major.) I vowed not to spend much time on reading blogs today, but got caught up chuckling through all the April Fools Day posts. What fun!

  3. Our cats could be twins. Looks like they're both really lazy, too. tee hee

  4. One of my last college courses was a 400 level independent study with my french prof and another student. One day us three are reading Balzac in his office, in french, and we start talking about fishing. I ask what catfish is in French. Is it poisson chat? The opther person agrees, it must be poisson chat. He laughs for about 10 minutes, it isn't poisson chat, but now it is. I don't know--good memory for me, so it must be for you. Fish cat. Yes I am crazy.

  5. Cute muse day poem Jodi. I love the kitty picture too. It looks just like I feel.

  6. So glad you liked my prank post. I like your take on T.S. Eliot. (Yes, I have to remind myself, it is T.S. Eliot, not that other guy.)

  7. I love the cats. We have FOUR now, including Oleg who weighs 25 pounds and is inherited from a friend who had to go into a nursing home. But what is Bloggers Muse Day? I'm still fairly new to this. I'm the Commonweeder.

  8. Great post jodi and I loved your manipulation of the poem. If it wasn't better than the original, it certainly was on a par. You're a talented wordsmith.


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