Seeding the future

1. A warrior’s tale

In Brandywine, Sudduth’s strain were strong
as waves bore Aker’s boats ashore
they met soldier-to-soldier without fear
spears clashing, sparking upon shields
furious breath pluming into morning’s frosted air.

Many sons were lost, but one:
fair Krim stole to Airyleaf’s bower
bewitched by fairy, fed honeysuckle,
giant moonflower and violet;
he returned years hence, the Black Prince of North.

2. The wisdom keeper

I wove flowers and leaves into crowns
(marigold, bellis)
made sweet tea and dried blooms
(borage, hyssop)
for sleep pillows, rituals of the day
(purslane, lovage)
gathered poppy seeds for cakes
(Hungarian blue)

but now I save the seeds for times to come
sowing a few each year, holding their wisdom,
guarding those that remain
for the day when love lies bleeding.


The NaPoWriMo prompt for day 5 was to draw insipiration from the names of heirloom plants. It is of course the perfect time of year for this prompt here in the north – we’ve just been planting many of these seeds at home. 

I also drew inspiration more broadly from La Belle Dame Sans Merci and this story about the Doomsday Seed Vault.

3 thoughts on “Seeding the future

  1. Magical. I love it. “furious breath pluming into morning’s frosted air” and the parallels to the seed vault. Such a pleasure, I think I’ll read it again. 🙂

    • A million thank yous 🙂 Maybe *this* is my favourite comment! I was on the seed-saving wisdom-keeper kick until I came across that amazing name for a tomato: Brandywine, Sudduth’s Strain. And then I was immediately in some Norse village and had to work it in somehow.

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