This last line from Pound's poem
Petals, on a wet, black bough."
is something of an enigma to most of us.It is Pound's imagist analogy to the first line ..but
to what petals did he refer
and wet ,black bough..to what tree...why wet ?
I confess to be both an imagist and a fan of enigma (in all art forms inc poetry, plays and painting) and yet Pound's enigma conveys no image to me.
It is clearly successful in the sense that over a century later it still provokes (well me at any rate).
?Ruben has ,using his local knowledge, kindly pointed out the trees likely to have been in Pound's mind....but it still leaves
the general question of the extent that enigma can play as both a poetic and artistic device.?
I have always enjoyed plays that do not end conventionally ,leaving one hanging in the air,letting the imagination rove , with something to think about.Sometimes even the author presents the reader with two ending options
How do you feel about enigma in poetry though ?
Should the poet add footnotes ,as Marianne Moore did on much of her poetry,to 'explain' some aspects ,especially of its inspiration.?
Can too much complicate and dare I say spoil ?
http://www.poetry.net/poem/37927 is a link to what has been described and included as one of US best poems ...Wallace Stevens 'Valley Candle'
What do you make of the enigma therein
and on the otherhand one of my favourite imagist poem ABOVE THE DOCK by the English master therof TE Hume
Above the quiet dock in midnight,
Tangled in the tall mast's corded height,
Hangs the moon. What seemed so far away
Is but a child's balloon, forgotten after play.