Make your own free website on
Peris is Livery: libérez l'abat-jour

English Rose

Early English everlasting
quadrate Rose
trimmed with some travestied flesh
tinted with bloodless duties dewed
with Lipton's teas
and grimed with crack-packed
the prim gilt
of a luster-scioned
Rose of arrested impulses
of the primordial attributes
a tepid heart inhibiting
with tactful terrorism
the Blossom Populous
to mystic incest with its ancestry
by the divine right of self-assertion
the post-conceptual
virginity of Nature
its pink paralysis
A World-Blush
glowing from
a never-setting-sun
Conservative Rose
of British Empire-made pot-pourri
of dry dead men making a sweetened smell
among a shrivelled collectivity
Which august dust
stirred by
the trouser-striped prongs of statesmanship
(whenever politic)
rises upon the puff of press alarum
and whirling itself
deliriously around the unseen
Bolshevik subsides
in ashy circularity
"a wreath" upon the unknown
soldier's grave
And Jehovah strikes --
through the fetish
of the island hedged --
who on his holiday
by the insidious pink
of Albion's ideal)
is looking for a rose
And the rose
from the green
of a green lane
and robustly round
Under a pink print
the village maid
scowls at the heathen
in female form
salutes the alien Exodus
staring so hard --
warms his nostalgia
on her belligerent innocence
The maidenhead
drooping her lid
and pouting her breast
his amity
Amorphous meeting
in the month of May
This Hebrew
culled by Cupid on a thorn
of the rose
lays siege
to the thick hedgerows
where she blows
on Christian Sundays
simpering in her
ideological pink
loaded with Mosaic
passions that amass
like money
implores her to take pity upon him
and come and be a "Lady in the City"
Maiden emotions
on leaves of novels
where anatomical man
has no notion
of offering other than the bended knee
to femininity
and purity
passes in pleasant ways
as the cows graze
For in those days
when Exodus courted the rose
literature was supposed to elevate us
So the maid with puffy
bosom where Jerusalem
dreams to ease
his head of calculations
in the Zero of ecstasy
and a little huffy
bristles with chastity
For this is the last Judgment
when Jehovah
roars "Open your mouth!
and I will tell you what you have been reading"
Exodus had been reading
making sharp distinction
between the harlot
and the Hausfrau arraying
her offspring in scarlet
such as garner good advice like grain
and such as know enough
to come in from the rain
The would-be
secessionist from Israel's etiquette
(shielding pliant Jewesses from shame
less glances
and the giving
of just percentages
to matrimonial intermediaries)
is spiritually intrigued
by the Anglo-Saxon phenomenon
of Virginity
on its own defensive!
This pouting
pearl beyond price
the male pretentions
to its impervious surface
Alice the gentile
Exodus the Jew
after a few
feverish tiffs
and reparations
chiefly conveyed in exclamations --
a means of expression
modified by lack of experience --
unite their variance
in marriage
mad to melt
with something softer than himself
clasps with soothing pledges
his wild rose of the hedges
While she
the presented knee
of chivalry
the sub-umbilical mystery
of his husbandry
His passionate-anticipation
of warming in his arms
his rose to a maturer coloration
which was all of aspiration
the grating upon civilization
of his sensitive organism
had left him
splinters upon an adamsite
of nerves like stalactites
This dying chastity
had rendered up no soul yet they pursued their conjugal
dilemmas as is usual
with people
who know not what they do
but know that what they do
is not illegal
Deep in the névrose
night he
peruses his body
divested of its upholstery
firmly insensitive
in mimicry
of its hypothetical model --
a petal
of the English rose
an abstracted Ada
in myopic contemplation
of the incontemplatable
compound rosette
of peerless negations
That like other Gods
has never appeared
leaving itself to be inferred
it is not seemly
that the one petal
shall apprehend
of the other petals
their conformity
For of this Rose
wherever it blows
it is certain that an impenetrable pink curtain
hangs between it and itself
and in metaphysical vagrance
it passes beyond the ken
of men unless
of exorbitant incomes
And Then --
merely indicating its presence
by an exotic fragrance
A rose --
that like religions
becoming amateur --
enwraps itself
in esoteric
and exoteric
the official
and inofficial
social morale
The outer
accepting the official
of the inner
as a plausible
for disciplining the inofficial
"flesh and devil"
to the ap parent impecca bility
of the English
And for the Empire
what form could be superior
to the superimposed
of the rose?
The best
is this compressed
all round-and-about
itself conformation
never letting out
subliminal infection
from hiatuses
in its sub-roseal skeleton
Its petals hung
with tongues that under the supervision
of the Board of Education
may never sing in concert --
for some
singing h
flat and some
h sharp 'The Arch
angels sing H'
There reigns a disproportionate
in the English Hanthem
And for further information
re the Rose --
and what it does to the nose
while smelling it
See Punch

~Mina Loy