November Poem

It’s not only children of Autumn
who can make a bouquet of Memories
and write a November poem.

When the wind calmed down
I went to the garden.
I started by collecting
burnt orange and red leaves.
I pressed them between
the yellowed pages of an old dictionary.
I watched the trees,
I gazed at the Moon
and I thought of you.
I did not wait very long.
Then I put my ear
to the book.

BEAUTY
was the first word
that came to me.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

~

illustration: Autumn Leaves
(Georgia O’Keeffe, 1924)

Garden of Words / Le Jardin

Let there be a Garden.
A Garden of Words
where the breeze blows slowly
and time goes back.

Ivy covered walls and a bench
facing the beautiful sunrise,
jasmine and clematis
climbing up old pear trees,

small white roses
humbly standing in the light
and shy patient ferns
with closed eyes.

A place like this is rare.
But now we can find it.
Please come whenever you like.
I will always be there.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

~

De ces quelques mots
je fais un jardin.
Un jardin caché derrière
un mur de lierre.

J’y ai planté du jasmin
qui grimpe dans un vieil arbre sage
et j’y ai mis un banc
d’où l’on voit peut voir

le soleil levant.
Et de petites roses blanches,
et de patientes fougères
aux grands yeux fermés.

Viens !
Ce jardin est le tien.
Et toujours tu pourras
m’y retrouver.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

Fallen Angel

I am a fallen angel.
In Heaven
I had a good job.
I was a gardener.

But I killed snails
and God fired me.
“They eat flowers!”
I said, but God replied

“That’s no excuse!”

Since that time
I’ve crawled around
the wide world
with my broken shell

and gardens after the rain
are the only place
where I can find
peace.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

God loves Gardens / Dieu aime les Jardins

Men like to build stone temples
with heavy studded doors
that they close properly
when they pretend to worship.

Do they really love each other?
Walk your own way and go
where the gardener kneels
every day,

where the Tree grows slowly,
where the Flower chants humbly
and where the patient Star shines
for every Pilgrim:

God loves Gardens.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

~

Les hommes aiment construire
des temples de pierre
avec de lourdes portes cloutées
qu’ils ferment au jour de la prière.

S’aiment-ils vraiment les uns les autres ?
Passe ton chemin et va,
là où le jardinier
chaque jour s’agenouille,

là où l’Arbre grandit lentement,
où la Fleur psalmodie humblement
et où l’Etoile patiente brille
pour chaque pèlerin :

Dieu aime les jardins.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

~

illustration: Stained Glass Window (The Mysterious Garden)
(Odilon Redon, c1905)

Not far from the Sea / Non loin de la Mer

Not far from the sea
we’ll live in a place of light
and gentle peace.
Behind whitewashed walls
I will plant wild lavender
and myrtle,

and sometimes before
fire angels open
the gates of dawn
shiny stars will fall
from ebony skies –
I saw them in a dream!

Thus we’ll grow old and wise
and neither Night nor Death
shall be able to separate us.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

Non loin de la mer
nous vivrons dans la lumière
et dans la paix.
Derrière des murs blanchis à la chaux
j’aurai planté des lavandes sauvages
et du myrte,

et parfois,
avant que des anges de feu
ouvrent grand les portes de l’aube,
de brillantes étoiles tomberont
des cieux d’ébène.
En rêve, je les ai vues !

Ainsi nous vieillirons ensemble
et ni la Nuit ni la Mort
ne pourront nous séparer.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

Prayer for a lonely Garden

My garden, my heaven,
I wonder who will listen
to the cherry tree spirits.
Will the rain quench your thirst?

And who will see the wandering
soul of the purple blue thistle?
My garden, my heaven,
I remember Winters. I remember Summers.

How brave snowdrops were!
How worthy the lily was!
But the hour is fast approaching:
I will soon be leaving

and I must pray for you.
May seasons be sweet. May children
marvel at your many wonders.
May you become

their Garden, their Heaven.

Frédéric Georges Martin

~

illustration: Daubigny’s Garden
(Vincent Van Gogh, 1890)

La Condamnation / The Sentence

Désespérées, des fleurs mauves
ont embrassé l’Automne,
et des lumières oranges
ici et là s’attardent.

Ce jardin est un tableau,
et le monde est un faux,
et de mon âme j’ai perçu
la vacillation

quand j’ai reçu
ma condamnation.
Mais je t’aime à jamais
et c’est tout ce qui compte.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

~

Desperate thistles
have fallen in love with Autumn.
Here and there
orange lights linger.

That garden is a painting,
and the world is a fake,
and I feel my soul quivering
for the sentence is Death,

but I love you
forever
and that’s all that
matters.

© Frédéric Georges Martin

~

illustration: thistles on orange (Erin Hanson, 2016)