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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Spring (the season) (07/23/09)

TITLE: Petal Paint
By Eliza Evans


My own children have sent me here to die

Though they are too polite to say

I sit

In my bed by the window

Like a moth in a little glass jar

I can see

The faithful apple tree
Frail and bent

She is as old as me

And yet

Each spring from the grave
she arises

resplendent renewed



Bursting forth
In a bouquet of blushing school girl beauty
Showing off her petaled petticoats to all the passersby
(she is not shy)
Baring her blossomed bosom to the nectar loving Bees and to
the courtly Chickadees
who tip their black caps
in swoony admiration of 'Our Fair Lady'

She is the biggest flirt in the garden!

But spring will pass (it always does)
Flowers will fall like confetti
Before long, she'll be back on duty
She'll don that ancient apron of matronly green, and faithfully bear fruit in season

But oh! to be young again


“Fetch my pink nail polish!” I did say

“Mother? You're not well,” they tried to sway

But I insisted, that they listen
As they used to do

And today

Ten painted toes

Like ten pink petals

Peek out from the bottom of my blanket

Waving at me—like a Banner—saying,

“Live! Live!"

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This article has been read 1153 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Dorothy Adamek07/30/09
Such delicate images! I loved this entry, and its title, and in particular, the flirting and petticoat images. Thank you for a beautiful piece of writing.
Connie Dixon08/01/09
I really loved this. What do our children know, anyway? No matter how old we are, there's still a lot of youth remaining in the elderly. Great job, very creative.
Carol Slider 08/02/09
This is absolutely wonderful!! I love the juxtaposition of the beautiful descriptions of spring with the musings of this lady who has spring in her heart. Beautiful--very well done.
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/03/09
You really wowed me with the delightful personification of the apple tree and the indomitable spirit of the old lady. Beautifully written and very creative.
Sharon Kane08/03/09
Loved the imagery, from the moth in the glass jar, to the flirtatious apple tree, to the pink toe nails. I was expecting her to go a bit further than that... lipstick, blusher, push-up bra! But perhaps I'm underestimating how sick she is. Anyway the pink toenails mirrored the tree blossom and showed her indefatigable spirit.
Jeanne E Webster 08/03/09

Intense yet frilly; most enjoyable!

Is it my imagination, or do the lines form a picture of sorts of the little old lady?!
Mariane Holbrook 08/03/09
This is so good I hardly know where to start. It smacks of so many beautiful things and it flows when it's read aloud, as I did. You're an exceptionally good writer, did you know that?? Kudos. Very big time!
Bryan Ridenour08/04/09
Wonderfully written, superb word choices and quite creative. Well done!
Chely Roach08/04/09
Wow, this was lovely. The imagery was incredible; your word choices were wonderful. Awesome piece!
Ada Nett08/05/09
The body may have aged but youth still reigned in the spirit...I like this little old young lady. Good job excellent writing!
Diana Dart 08/05/09
Loved the attitude of this girl-at-heart! I wanted to cheer with her and then go and paint my toe nails! Very, very pretty piece.
Sara Harricharan 08/05/09
So glad for the "petal paint"! The detail of nail polish makes this so very, bittersweet and real. Nicely done! I like how the title fits too!
Pamela Kliewer08/05/09
:) Your poem made me smile. Thank you.
Mona Purvis08/05/09
I could wrap myself up in this...it is that wonderful! Takes my breath away, makes me smile, makes me cry, makes me sad, makes me happy.
Sharon Kane08/06/09
YES! Let me be the first to congratulate you on another well-deserved EC. Go for it!
Patricia Turner08/06/09
Oh! And let me be the second my friend! What a beautiful poem and I absolutely love the ending! Then again, the beginning and the middle were wonderful too! Well done! Congratulations!!!!
Diana Dart 08/06/09
Rock On Eliza!! Beautiful AND a winner!
Loren T. Lowery08/06/09
Beautifully expressed, what else can I say? A lot of thoughtful ponderings packed into this little poem. Well done and congratulations!
Seema Bagai 08/06/09
Excellent writing. Congrats on the well-deserved win.
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/06/09
Happy Dancin' for your win--almost as proud as if I'd written it myself, sweet Lady!
Karlene Jacobsen08/11/09
Poetry is so difficult for me to understand most of the time. I read this a few times to really grasp (I hope) the message. The woman gaining inspiration to live from the old apple tree that she is comparing herself to. It's beautiful. Inspirational.

Congrats on placing and your EC. Way to go my friend.
Catrina Bradley 08/13/09
Delicious is the word that comes to mind. The woman comparing herself to a moth in a glass jar broke my heart. I've felt that way, even tho I 'm not confined to a bed in a home where I was "sent to die." The personification of the apple tree is superb! I absolutely love it. A gentle rhyming rhythm that isn't forced, beautiful language and word choice, just a touch of alliteration, make this poem a joy to read. And a happy ending, too! I give you an A. :D
Loren T. Lowery08/17/09
Your work is so creative and is to be admired. The ability to say so much in so few words is truly a gift. Thank-you, too for all your kind works on my work - I would be remiss if I didn't tell you how appreciated it is. Loren
Beth Muehlhausen03/19/10
WOW! I love this! So glad I stopped by to take a look at your recent challenge entry.

Your style AND content are both captivating - very involving and inspiring. I have a feeling you cultivate deep soul-places and write from them. :-)
william price03/24/10
Wow, wow, wow. This was fantastic. I loved it. It more than desearved its place. Very talented. God bless.
Beth LaBuff 06/22/11
You've used a gorgeous extended metaphor (the tree and the blushing school girl). I absolutely LOVE your style here, the format, your word choices, just everything. I loved the turn around in outlook of your MC, I could picture her with her polish! This is so very well done! Super congrats on your ribbon award, it's so very much deserved.