The eye of the beholden

Laburnum flowers

The eye of the beholden

There in the neighbour’s garden
           in Doughty Street just a few doors
down from Dickens
           the tall laburnam in full bloom
golden chain or golden rain
           they call it for the bright yellow
trifoliate flowers densely packed
           on the long racemes that dangle
in the warm summer air
           the petals curved upwards
and downwards to form
           a gasp of an open mouth
so as to entice the pollinator
           with a deep sigh to enter
and sex it up : beauty
           is in the eye of the beholden

John Lyons

 

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Phalera bucephala

Phalera bucephala

Phalera bucephala

Or buff-tip—
           a heavy-bodied moth
with grey forewings
           and a prominent buffpatch
at the apex : its hindwings
           are creamy white
but its thoracic hair
           is buff too

A night errant
            it rides the June or July skies
and is pulled but not driven
           to the light
At rest it resembles
           a broken twig :
the deadly laburnam
           is its favoured foodplant

John Lyons