the lilac poem


Before the lilacs are over and they are only
shrunken stalks at the ends of drooping branches,
I want to write a poem about them and their beauty
brief and star-shining as a young girl’s promise. 

Because there is so much made of strength and wealth and power,
because the little things are lost in this world,
I write a poem about lilacs knowing that both
are this day’s only: tomorrow they will lie forgotten.

by Raymond Souster
Painting: Girl with Lilac by Sophie Anderson

My favorite poem.  I found this in one of those poetry anthologies I bought by mistake.  This was the only really valuable find I got from there, and happy for the mistake if only to have found this treasure.


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