Here is the poem we did interrogating a flower. I know the rhyming needs work, but I hope to improve. I just thought rhyming would be fun since the poems I write on my own never rhyme. I like the ideas I came up with though since one does not usually associate a flower with crime. We had to come up with a new style for this poem so here is what I did.
The Expandette (Espanderrone in Italian) is an old style of poetry originating from the monks of Northern Italy during the 13th century. It is a form where each stanza has one more line than the previous one, so the first stanza has one line, the second two and so on. This was to increase their praise for God each time, so that by the tenth stanza it is quite a long praise indeed. Each stanza is made up of rhyming couplets, so the odd numbered stanzas end in one line that does not rhyme with any line in the stanza. Also the first and last words of the poem must be the same, usually “God” in the original poems. However, over time the form has been adapted to become used to describe various topics, not just ones concerning religion. Though it lost popularity, during the Romantic period a small group of Italian authors picked up the style again, though with much shorter poems than originally, and it even spread to the rest of Europe.
‘State your name,’ the voice behind the light said
‘I am Miss Flower
I sit by the bank hour after hour’
‘I am Inspector Ucello so don’t waste my time.
There are some questions I’d like to ask concerning a crime.
It happened by the river.’
‘I’m in here for questioning?
But all I know is how the birds sing
Or the creek ripples over a stone
And the wind whispers all alone.’
‘I think you know more than you say
You were there that day
The incident occurred
Or so I gained from a little bird
‘I live in a lush green meadow
My pretty petals on show
My sweet fragrance floats all around
Simply sitting I make not a sound.
I am in the same place all of the time
And I tell you I witnessed no crime.’
‘Everyone questioned said you were there
When the harmful substance was released in the air
It hurt a poor boy who happened by
He went away with a tear in his eye
And a runny nose he wiped on his hand.
Now that I can not stand.’
He looked at her accusingly.
‘I’m innocent!’ the flower cried
Ask any of those who sit by my side.
Qualms with others I have none
I would not hurt anyone.
The breeze blows me about
But I do not argue or shout.
I am complacent and kind
There’s no reason to question me; there’s nothing to find’
‘What about these?
Accusations from the birds and the bees.
They have seen what you have done,
Out in broad daylight under the sun.
Things are not in your favor.
You are known for outrageous behavior.
I have a record of previous crimes.
You’ve been sited multiple times
For indecent exposure’
‘To all, myself, I do not expose!’
‘Ah but flowers wear no clothes,
Your sexual organs are out for all to see
Your perfume and colour entice every bee
Your stamen and pistol are out on display
From morning ‘til the end of the day
Surrounded by pretty petals, you flaunt for everyone
The parts used for reproduction.
You, dear flower, are so indecent
To jail you really should be sent!’
‘You’re accused of illegal trafficking too’
‘Inspector I say it isn’t true!’
‘Ah but flower you lied
From the law you cannot hide.
I have here photographic evidence
Of more than one instance.
Innocent insects come by
You powder them with golden dust and away they fly.
You have others do your dirty deeds
You are no better than the clinging weeds.
You’re a criminal.
The pretty flower sighed and shook her head
Then looked up and quietly said
‘Perhaps I am guilty of those things,
Of utilizing creatures with wings,
Or of being so sweet a hummingbird will not miss
Hovering by to give me a kiss,
Or of exposing myself for all to see
Though I do not think one should hide beauty
Beings of great beauty are generally accused
By those less beautiful so I am not amused
By these accusations with which you toy
I tell you I did not touch the boy!’
‘You can not escape now.
If you are innocent then tell me how
We have this video of you
At the scene of the crime with the boy too?’
The flower then cracked, ‘All right I’ll admit
I am the one who did it!’
I did not mean to, I swear
But my pollen floated into the air
On the breeze it blows
And then up the little boy’s nose.
It could have just as easily been from the trees
But it was I who made the boy sneeze.
‘So you finally admit it,” he said with a grin,
I knew you were guilty from the time you came in.
Your delicate face could not hide
The criminal I saw lurking inside.’
With a flick of his wing he commanded, ‘Take her away!
A prison cell is where she shall stay.’
Handcuffs were clamped around each leaf of green,
The rings of iron for all to be seen.
The guards lead her off down the hall
Where she broke down and began to bawl.
She was so upset because of her guilt
That she positively started to wilt.
It is not pretty, I must relate,
To see a flower in such a state.
3 comments by 2 or more people
Very nice. There’s a strong relation between the interrogation and interrogated, I feel, and the ideas you played with are good. I especially liked the whole ‘indecent exposure’ claim and the crime against the boy in particular. I enjoyed it.
15 Oct 2007, 09:46
There are a few forced rhymes in this that get in the way of a good read. Forced rhymes in my book are when entire lines (often cliché lines too!) are inserted to bounce off the previous; or when syntax is jigged about to put a rhyme word at the end.
E.g. “Or so I gained from a little bird” is a cliché dropped in for the rhyme and doesn’t add much. Similarly, the ‘birds and bees’ image.
And “A prison cell is where she shall stay” is a corruption of “she can stay in a prison cell”, but the whole of that dialogue bit is made slightly archaic to fit the rhymes.
There are always other solutions, which is the hard task of the poet – to find the best words and put them in the best places.
20 Oct 2007, 16:50
It’s great blog!! My friend is a poet !! Last week he purchased a Glorious Garden from From You Flowers store at Couponalbum.com & saved $10 by using coupon code ENT..!!
07 Dec 2007, 07:56
Add a commentYou are not allowed to comment on this entry as it has restricted commenting permissions.