Rose Pogonias

14 07 2013

rose pogonias


A saturated meadow,
Sun-shaped and jewel-small,
A circle scarcely wider
Than the trees around were tall;
Where winds were quite excluded,
And the air was stifling sweet
With the breath of many flowers, —
A temple of the heat.

There we bowed us in the burning,
As the sun’s right worship is,
To pick where none could miss them
A thousand orchises;
For though the grass was scattered,
yet every second spear
Seemed tipped with wings of color,
That tinged the atmosphere.

We raised a simple prayer
Before we left the spot,
That in the general mowing
That place might be forgot;
Or if not all so favored,
Obtain such grace of hours,
that none should mow the grass there
While so confused with flowers.

Robert Frost


Line Drawing of Pogonia ophioglossoides (L.) Ker Gawl.



USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York. Vol. 1: 560.




2 responses

14 07 2013
Heidi Viars

this is such a beautiful poem … I think my kids would be happy to have them grow in our yard … and would be all too glad not having to mow 🙂

14 07 2013
D. Raymond-Wryhte

As I understand it, these flowers prefer wetter conditions. Your yard might be a little too soggy too often … and then there’d be the issue of mosquitoes. Yea verily, however: in this fallen world, roses come with thorns. On the other hand, thorns often come with roses.

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