Pete Crowther

Rookie - 0 Points (Hull, East Yorkshire, England)

Time - Poem by Pete Crowther

In wartime, I remember, once a week
My mother took me as a treat to town
Where we would make a bee-line for the shop
That sold small cactus plants in bright red pots,
Old stock left over from before the War
And each one priced at sixpence or a shilling.

In my collector’s mind they seemed to glow,
Those magic shapes, exotic and unique
In those grey days of scarcity and dearth,
They were the only ‘toys’ I’d ever known
(You cannot count those flat unpainted pigs
And sheep in shiny lead that Woolworth’s sold) .

These cacti were the highlight of my week,
They seemed to brightly shine inside my head,
Each one so trim and perfect in its pot
Surrounded by a ring of silver sand
And neatly labelled with its Latin name,
Those occult names that I can still recite—

Kleinia articulata, the Candle Plant
With blueish waxy leaves like parted tongues,
The green Nopalea coccinilifera
And densely spined Opuntia microdasys,
Whose deadly barbs embedded in my flesh
I had to probe and pluck each time with tweezers.

I can recall the choosing, and the care
With which I carried each one home, like glass,
And like a miser gloated over it.
Now sixty years have passed, yet when
I go into my greenhouse, where row on row
Of cacti grow, I feel just eight years old.

Comments about Time by Pete Crowther

There is no comment submitted by members..

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: magic, silver, war, remember, mother, green, red, home, time, shopping

Poem Submitted: Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Famous Poems

  1. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  5. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  6. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  7. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  8. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
  9. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You
    Pablo Neruda
  10. Television
    Roald Dahl
[Report Error]