Lost in a field of flowers –
But not one could I pluck –
It was just my luck
That none had yet opened –
I had arrived prior to the moment
02.28.95 – 04.21.95
Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion
and published in Perspectives, ISBN 0-9686250-0-2.
Notes to this poem…
This is a difficult poem to explain because it conjures up a lot of “wrong” thoughts, even though I never harbored them. The metaphor of the flowers, garden and picking them were for instances when I were around youths who had all the signs of being great citizens and people when they grew up, should they capitalize on it, having a great head start in their teenage years with the qualities they displayed as leaders and high achievers. Some of these youths were female, and I wasn’t a lot older than some of them at 20-21 at the times I was around them, but old enough to be on the other side of the 18 year age limit for distinction between minor and adult that it would have been inappropriate to even consider asking them out, never mind pursuing a relationship and not just a date.
Going into volunteering situations with youths, I had already anticipated the potential situations of meeting outstanding teenage girls that I would never do anything that suggested any interest in them or even think about it. I just wrote the metaphorical poem to acknowledge the situation, and I don’t know about you, but I thought I did very well with the poem to talk so subtly about what is still uncomfortable for me to write of today. I felt a lot more at ease writing that poem than I did writing these two paragraphs, I can tell you that!
The O-series of poems are one stanza poems composed before I got onto writing haiku and tanka, and short poetry while in action or traveling by select means like plane or ferry. These poems are 3-9 lines long with at least one rhyming couplet, and not of the short forms just mentioned. For the sake of elegance, I just called the collection One.