My Mother’s Eyes

We took a ride into the countryside
to search for bluebells but we first saw phlox.
Delighted by the sight my mother cried,
“Look at the flowers flutter on the rocks!
Look at the bluebells!”  I looked at my clock.
Long ride, no blue, no bells, but don’t be snide.
Still I replied, ”They’re flirts like new spring frocks,
But they’re not bluebells.  Bluebells are spring’s pride
and joy, much better than phlox.” I can’t hide
my thoughts so well, but I tried not to mock
her as she saw by the creek, eyes sky wide,
parades of bluebells, face rapt and awestruck.

I wish I could see with my mother’s eyes
bluebells and phlox, perpetually surprised.



Carl Kinsky is a country lawyer living in Ste. Genevieve, Missouri.

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7 Responses

  1. Paul Freeman

    You’ve captured this moment in time like a film, Carl. It’s very vivid. And I like the final couplet – it says so much.

    Thank you for the read.

      • Carl Kinsky

        Thanks for the generous words You reminded me of Dante Rossetti’s line “A Sonnet’s a moment’s monument.”

        I agree the photo’s great. Can’t wait to see the real thing again.

  2. C.B. Anderson

    I’d like to know, Carl, whether these are Spanish or English bluebells. I have lots of the Spanish ones in my garden, and their appearance in late spring is an event always looked forward to with eager anticipation. And you are right — they are better than phlox, whether Phlox divaricata, P. subulata or P. stolonifera.

    • Carl Kinsky

      Virginia bluebells. They grow here, typically in wooded floodplains and are electric blue. They epitomize the excitement of the early spring garden for me.

      • C.B. Anderson

        Virginia bluebells, then. Mertensia virginica. They don’t flourish here in Massachusetts as well as they might in other climes, and I’m not sure which species the photo above actually represents, but ultimately a bluebell is a bluebell is a bluebell. If you live in Missouri, I’m sure the other species I mentioned would do well there. Give them a try and send back your report.

  3. Carl Kinsky

    The Battle of the Bluebells. Sounds like a reality TV show I might actually want to watch


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