Sunday, January 5, 2020
Read "Fawn-Lilies" at The Eldritch Dark:
It's been a while since I've read a poem by Clark Ashton Smith (CAS) that is named for a specific plant. In this case, I'm assuming CAS is writing about Erythronium californicum, aka the California fawn lily.
I like the way this poem references the transient nature of the floral part of this plant ("Briefer than all brief things your hidden bloom") and uses that image to capture the fleeting nature of a romantic tryst:
Ye die, and cannot say
Who passed beneath the April pines today;
And you alone have heard our hidden love,
And known her flow'r-soft name.
Poetry is the perfect medium in which to capture impressions of the ephemeral, and here CAS uses his medium to great advantage.