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agapanthus - african lily

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Written by Rg Gregory

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 [from agape (love); anthus (flower)]

you may not be willing to notice me
i have an awkward sense of myself
my name can be hard on the tongue
i do not grow easily in places
where the sun only fitfully appears

i've come a long way northwards
gardens do not flatter my needs
i am a shy sheltered plant - my leaves
first come above the earth slowly
serpenting about tasting the air

then my stalks flex tentatively
skywards uncertain of grace - people
walk by me curiously expecting dis-
appointment when my flowers deign
to curtsey boorishly into the light

they ignore i'm agape not eros
my passion is a mute kind of longing
a fund of good-feeling - i blend
much more than possess (respect
distance) bestow rather than demand

my flowers voice outwards - trumpets
toned down to temper their height
my scores are obliged to be gentle
i use only circumspect colours
love is better for not being showy


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