The Gardener

The Gardener

A Poem by Linda Marie Van Tassell
"

He planted violets beneath her skin, adorned her lips with an ensanguined rose, folded her hands over what might have been, a half-bloomed blossom that no longer grows.

"



He planted violets beneath her skin,
adorned her lips with an ensanguined rose,
folded her hands over what might have been,
a half-bloomed blossom that no longer grows.

The green wood whispered with November’s chill.
He dug his heels into the weeping earth
and knuckled her name in syllabic shrill,
a woman unwanted, of little worth.

He would not settle for settling down
with the scarlet secret of tangled vines,
a harpy hid on the outskirts of town
where friends do not stay and truth never shines.

He never wanted more than a minute.
She wanted to hold him for all her life.
He was a knave whose heart wasn’t in it.
She never knew about his kids and wife.

Her smile beamed joy like the first breath of spring.
Her voice rippled like an oracle stream.
He was angry as a scorpion’s sting.
The pale death of hope relinquished her dream.

He wrapped his hands round her delicate neck,
and the wind shattered her future to end.
A moment in time, a fragment, a speck,
her sweet, young life will never reascend.

He firmly fixed his heaven to hell,
shoveled death into the grave of his heart,
tossed dirt upon her like coins in a well
and wished at once her memory depart.

Winter arrived like a dispossessed ghost.
A collarbone cleaved the glittering snow,
and in the moonlight stood a marker post
declaring a truth that we feared to know.

There’s a hum in the cradle of the earth,
undulating songs of beauty and death.
Heartbeats are hindered in anemic dearth,
and the wind is holding her totem breath.

Chrysanthemums are braided in her hair.
The fractured ribs are now skeletal bones.
Two flowers fair are planted in despair
beneath the granite of angel and stones.

© 2019 Linda Marie Van Tassell


Author's Note

Linda Marie Van Tassell

My Review

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Featured Review

Linda, this is a short story or novel masterfully crafted as a poem. You employ so many literary devices in this piece, and they all work (end rhyme and pattern, alliteration, consonance, simile, etc.).

As I read this poem, I thought about a 1990s murder in eastern Kentucky; an FBI agent murdered (straggled) his informant-girlfriend after she told him she was pregnant. Though he was convicted and sent to prison, he’s out now, reportedly working as an appliance repair man in Florida.

The wreckage this man left in his wake is horrific. Not only, like your victim here, did the woman die, but parts of her family, childhood innocence, trust in others, etc. In the case I mention above, the FBI agent’s wife became an alcoholic and eventually died. So much tragedy in one man’s evil act.

Metaphorically, more broadly, your poem could speak to the loss of goodness and innocence in society, and how one person’s self-serving thoughts and behavior, can have such tragic consequences.

Like your other works, the image and music give this poem depth and emotion. It’s an all-around exceptional creation.

Posted 2 Days Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you, R.E. Crimes like these are so heinous, particularly when an innocent child is involved. .. read more



Reviews

Linda, you are truly a poet. So many wonderful aspects to this poem. Simile, rhyming, alliteration, etc. in addition to a wonderful story packed with emotion. A loved one's brutal death robs us of not only the loved one, but of innocence. We are reminded too harshly of reality. A stunning piece of writing. Lydi**

Posted 1 Day Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you so much, Lydia.
The last line of the first verse, as well as what follows, reminded me of walking through Glasgow's necropolis and seein pillars for headstones, cut at awkward angles. It wasnt until years later that i realised there are hidden codes in cemetries and the weirdly cut pillar denotes a life cut short. The picture you used is far more relateable though.
What a beautifully told tale of love unrequited, selfishness and brutality, where only kindness was sought.
After your words, thoughts linger on karma, but i believe in this less and less now, as hers wasnt forthcoming in this life... But hopefully his was.

Posted 2 Days Ago


Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you, Lorry. So often justice seems meted out unfairly - the guilty go unpunished, while the i.. read more
This poem is beautiful. I could feel every line. I got chills down my spine reading this. This is really a great poem here. Keep up the great work and look forward to reading more from you.

Posted 2 Days Ago


Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you, Awesome One. :-)
The Awesome One

1 Day Ago

you are very welcome
Linda, this is a short story or novel masterfully crafted as a poem. You employ so many literary devices in this piece, and they all work (end rhyme and pattern, alliteration, consonance, simile, etc.).

As I read this poem, I thought about a 1990s murder in eastern Kentucky; an FBI agent murdered (straggled) his informant-girlfriend after she told him she was pregnant. Though he was convicted and sent to prison, he’s out now, reportedly working as an appliance repair man in Florida.

The wreckage this man left in his wake is horrific. Not only, like your victim here, did the woman die, but parts of her family, childhood innocence, trust in others, etc. In the case I mention above, the FBI agent’s wife became an alcoholic and eventually died. So much tragedy in one man’s evil act.

Metaphorically, more broadly, your poem could speak to the loss of goodness and innocence in society, and how one person’s self-serving thoughts and behavior, can have such tragic consequences.

Like your other works, the image and music give this poem depth and emotion. It’s an all-around exceptional creation.

Posted 2 Days Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you, R.E. Crimes like these are so heinous, particularly when an innocent child is involved. .. read more
You write so beautifully Linda! I held my breath reading every exquisite verse. I agree with Jacob, not just him, every writer here would wish to write like this. My heartfelt compliments 🌸

Posted 2 Days Ago


Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

You are so sweet, Divya. Thank you. That's the wonderful thing about writing … the field is big .. read more
DIVYA

1 Day Ago

I love your thoughts Linda. Yes, there’s scope for everyone to shine. Bless you, my dear friend.
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JTD
I like how you can turn something so tragic into something so beautiful. To kill her because she was pregnant with his child is awful. I think it was yesterday where I read a woman had filed for divorce in New York. Her husband decapitated her and put her head in her lap. Then he slit the throat of his 5 yr. old daughter before killing himself. Sick!

Posted 2 Days Ago


Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you, JTD.
"winter arrived like a dispossessed ghost" damn that is a good line...wish i had written it.
earth welcomed her...and reflected to him his guilt for not thinking she was good enough...she wanted commitment and he wanted detachment...
a symphony of pain here.
I wish i could write like this...
j.

Posted 2 Days Ago


Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

You wish you could write like this, and I wish I could write more like you.
A dark tale here so well narrated. Some great alliteration and your rhyme scheme, one to be admired. I recognise the effort that went into this poem. I particularly like "and knuckled her name in syllabi shrill". First stanza description, my favourite. A really accomplished piece of writing. Well done Linda Marie.

Chris

Posted 2 Days Ago


Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you, Chris.
the title, personifications, story telling and character building all work together to give me this tragic end of an innocent ... curse the villainy of the antagonists black heart >;[ ... if i don't look for iambs etc. it reads like listening to a story teller ... weaving a tale by the fireside ... to achieve the rhyming must have been a bit of work .. it would be for me anyway .. kind of want some justice to be done to the knave ..but ..she's and angel ... perhaps at peace
E.

Posted 3 Days Ago


Linda Marie Van Tassell

1 Day Ago

Thank you, E.

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Added on November 9, 2019
Last Updated on November 9, 2019
Tags: The Gardener, Linda Marie Van Tassell, Adultery, Affair, Pregnancy, Murder

Author

Linda Marie Van Tassell
Linda Marie Van Tassell

VA



About
Poetry has been my passion since I was about fifteen years old, and I love the structure of rhyme and meter moreso than just randomly throwing words upon a page without any form whatsoever. Whi.. more..

Writing

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