the Poet & the Bean-Stalk

She plants words with trepidation,
unsure of their reception
in a world quick to mow weeds.

She tends her seedlings,
loathe to water them down,
as they spring from her source.

Once germinated, words mushroom
like that magical bean-stalk,
lengthening and strengthening,

an offering for others to climb.
Even if some wield axes, draw blood,
her words hold up, sturdy and perennial.

"Rosalie" by Virginia Francis Sterrett

Kerry's challenge to the Real Toads features the storybook illustrations of Virginia Francis Sterrett. Poem 20 of 30 in April!


  1. I love this take! Unique and piercing!

  2. Wonderful! We all wish to raise perennial words. And your poem shows all the obstacles we have to overcome to do it, including resilience once they seem assured. I love this.

  3. Yes, they can't mow em down faster than we can write em, I say--at least this month, which is seeming rather long atm. The sense of renewal and of grace under pressure is strong here.

  4. Love that you went the beanstalk route .. words never sounded better.

  5. Ah, this is just fabulous, Marian. I love the title, and the intrepid, if brow-beaten poet continuing her poetical gardening.

  6. Wonderful, from trepidatious planting to sturdy perennials, Marian, and everything in between! (I also love the title, so perfect for IGWRT and for the prompt.)

  7. that's really clever and beautiful and strikes a real chord

  8. Marian, using the "beanstalk" to capture the work and imagination of the poet, perfect. The seeds, germination, all of it. And to think it's for the Imaginary Garden makes it all the more delicious and apt. Loved this! Amy

  9. I love the comparison and the strength in this piece.

  10. I love this! I love this! Especially how you ended it. Oh those who wield their axes shall not deter a poet. :)

  11. Love this special poem. It's so true of our poetic endeavours..I especially like the last words "her words hold up, sturdy and perennial." We can only hope.

  12. Yes, the world is quick to mow weeds but we must keep planting and nurturing. Excellent metaphor!

  13. I love this to pieces, Marian!

  14. What an excellent metaphor. Fantastic opening line: "She plants words with trepidation"

    Love these as well:
    "loathe to water them down" (very clever)
    "Once germinated, words mushroom"

    Really strong, smart ending:
    "Even if some wield axes, draw blood,
    her words hold up, sturdy and perennial."

  15. Now I see this as a beanstalk! Yes, your words hold up!

  16. love this analogy :) keep on planting!


Thank you for sharing your thoughts!