Romance - Poem by Mark Sauer
A pot of flowers squatted on the ground
By the door. Bored, "What have we here? " she asked.
They were those very blossoms that once basked
Only on Socotra. They could be found
Nowhere save the dread Dioscurides,
The Ultima Thule of the south and east,
Amidst Myrrha's tears and Dragon's Blood trees;
They first bloomed in footprints of St.Thomas,
No longer doubting, when he walked the dry grass
Of the Furthest Isle of remotest seas,
Brought hither by the Pentecost to tell
Of probed wounds. Daring merchants came to sell
Gold for dragon's blood and myrrh (pound for pound) ,
Those healing saps of cinnabar, which when ground
Into a simple could snatch from Charon
The dying gladiator. So upon
Socotra were these flowers gathered too
(Perhaps partaking the physic virtue
Of the aloes and Asclepius' Isle):
Isle so isolate even the Liar
Marco forebore it. As Pliny remarked…
"Begonias" I just said; how to explain?
"Oh what a shame-
I'd hoped they were exotics, not …mundane."
And so in silence we passed on.
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