“April is the cruellest month,” wrote T.S. Eliot in his long 5-section poem “Waste Land.” Here’s an excerpt from the first section.
For Ezra Pound
Il Miglior Fabbro
I. The Burial of the Dead
April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.
This particular April of 2020 seems to be difficult, but why would Eliot or rather the speaker of the poem call April the cruelest month? Much activity takes place in nature during spring and there’s work to be done. The cozy winter days of inactivity, dormancy are coming to an end and the lilacs are blooming. There’s no time for story-telling and leisure. How do you feel about the spring, about April? Can you flip the first line on its head and write a poem about the kindness of April?
As usual, you can post your poem here if you like. You will need a password. Write to email@example.com if you need the password.
One thought on “Prompt April 8 2020”
Let Evening Come
Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving
up the bales as the sun moves down.
Let the cricket take up chafing
as a woman takes up her needles
and her yarn. Let evening come.
Let dew collect on the hoe abandoned
in long grass. Let the stars appear
and the moon disclose her silver horn.
Let the fox go back to its sandy den.
Let the wind die down. Let the shed
go black inside. Let evening come.
To the bottle in the ditch, to the scoop
in the oats, to air in the lung
let evening come.
Let it come, as it will, and don’t
be afraid. God does not leave us
comfortless, so let evening come.
Jane Kenyon (1947-1995)