Smiling dawn to dawn
I may take time to smile but keep it on,
I know what life means, how it bears fruit,
I learn to smile right from red of young dawn.
Let there be sun or shade, reason or none,
I greet all with a child’s smile— ever cute,
I take my time to smile, but keep it on,
Not from a grown up face, grimace and frown,
That forgets to smile, nor from devil’s flute,
I learn by smiling right from early dawn.
Of those to me too close, together grown,
I dance with greens, with sweet and sour, born brute1,
I learn to smile in no time, keep it on.
Bless be the fruits, fertile soil, smiling sun,
And great Nature that I rise from my root2,
And keep my learning on from dawn to dawn;
Until one day I wither, done and gone,
Ne’er yet forgetting the truth absolute:
To take no time to smile and keep it on,
To start smiling right from the infant dawn.
A Villanelle, the speaker in this poem is a flower.
It talks of its philosophy of life and those of its
close companions— leaves, thorns, and fruits apart
from sprightly butterflies. It opens the monologue
as the bud says, I take my time to smile, but keep
it on as I blossom into flower.
1. Greens allude to leaves, sweet and sour to fruits,
and born brute to thorns, the close companions
of the flowers, all motivated by different
creeds in life.
2. Rise from my root: The word ‘root’ is used as
pun—both the roots of a plant, and in the sense
of ‘rising from the base, inane nature’.
- Villanelles | 09.10.08 |
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