Day 22 Napowrimo Challenge
In honor of Earth Day, I’d like to challenge you to write a georgic. The original georgic poem was written by Virgil, and while it was ostensibly a practical and instructional guide regarding agricultural concerns, it also offers political commentary on the use of land in the wake of war. The georgic was revived by British poets in the eighteenth century, when the use of land was changing both due to the increased use of enlightenment farming techniques and due to political realignments such as the union of England, Scotland, and Wales.
Your Georgic could be a simple set of instructions on how to grow or care for something, but it could also incorporate larger themes as to how land should be used (or not used), or for what purposes.
Each blade of grass cools and cushions naked summer feet.
Pure daisy petals inspire children to form chains for halos and crowns.
Scented blousy roses tempt lovers to give away unguarded hearts.
Sage and stately trees steadfastly raise their arms in worship,
whilst housing birds, squirrels and bugs.
Their roots protecting foxes, badgers and rabbits
in bracken covered burrows and mossy dens.
The bluebells delicate and snowdrops hardy,
the clinging ivy, sheltering scurrying insects,
all withstand the extremes of each season, weathered yet thriving.
Opening and closing in response to the sun,
reaching skyward in praise.
None needs man’s intervention.
Man takes the fruits of their labour to feed his own.
Frustrated that nature is not abundant enough,
not convenient enough, not quick enough
to satisfy man’s demands, he violates the earth.
Tearing up nature, he manipulates and reforms the land
into ordered geometrical design;
to contain more production in a single acre,
to harness and harvest every last ounce nature can provide.
Like a caged tiger pacing, sleeping, repeating,
she churns out crops, silently awaiting freedom.
She survives captivity and molestation.
When man has gone, she will flourish once more,
using his decomposed body as nutrients to feed the soil.
The largest, most dominant predators fall,
swallowed up and fossilised by the ground they once trampled.
The roses arise more fragrant.
The bees produce a sweeter honey.