My father woke the day that he
__Was in the forest born
To find that all gentility
__Was from his nature shorn.

A base unwilled enchantment laid
__That jealous fairy scorned.
For in that tale of sleeping maid,
__My father was the thorn.

His portrait on the cover of
__Your Grimm both old and worn
Depicts him soaring high above
__Her tower all forlorn.

A dreaded briar tangled ‘round
__And yet at heart he mourned
To see the family sleeping sound
__Within his tendrils borne,

And so he swore to take no joy
__From foolish suitors torn,
But sought to find the noble boy
__Who’d kiss her in the morn.

Remember then, should woolen hose
__And skin be likewise torn
While you hunt for the wild rose
__The table to adorn,

I do not like your blood to let,
__But I’m a guardian thorn,
My father’s son, all to protect
__My nest of robins sworn.



Once a high school Spanish teacher, Theresa Zappe is now a home educator in New York.  She and her husband are much occupied with math, meals, science, soccer games, sentence diagrams, dirty dishes, Latin, and laundry.

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5 Responses

  1. Philip Keefe

    Thank you for this poem, it’s as beautiful as the painting that goes with it.

  2. Avery Miller

    Thank you for the kind comment. I’m wondering if our editor could make two corrections for me. In stanza 5, “seek” should be “sought”, and stanza 7, “didn’t” should be “do not”. These stanzas were added quickly at Mr. Mantyk’s suggestion. He took time to help improve this poem for which I am very grateful.


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