Lessons in the Orchard by Carol Ann Duffy

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An apple’s soft thump on the grass, somewhen
in this place. What was it? Beauty of Bath.
What was it? Yellow, vermillion, round, big, splendid;
already escaping the edge of itself,
like the mantra of bees,
like the notes of rosemary, tarragon, thyme.
Poppies scumble their colour onto the air,
now and there, here, then and again.

Alive-alive-oh,
the heart’s impulse to cherish; thus,
a woman petalling paint onto a plate –
cornflower blue –
as the years pressed out her own violet ghost;
that slow brush of vanishing cloud on the sky.

And the dragonfly’s talent for turquoise.
And the goldfish art of the pond.
And the open windows calling the garden in.

This bowl, life, that we fill and fill.


 

Written to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Charleston festival.

What's on

27 Oct
Experimental Drawing with Sarah Colbourne

Experimentation has always been at the heart of creativity at Charleston.  

10 NovFilm
Difficult Love | Zanele Muholi

Film and panel discussion Difficult Love, co-directed by photographer and activist Zanele Muholi, is a compelling More

17 NovTalk
Transgressive Identities

Join curator of the Museum of Transology, E-J Scott, dress historian Dr Jane Hattrick and trans Muslim dandy Sabah Choudrey

08 Dec
Gin and Jazz Party

Join us for an enchanted evening of swing jazz, dancing and cocktails. With live music from the Swing Ninjas.


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