These roses will all be read

A collaborative poem with the Oracle today. Odilon Redon is one of her favourite painters.



a breeze from the so-many-coloured ocean,

catch it if you can,

for the wind of change is coming,

bringing darkness or light,

who knows?


I know that behind the darkness is light,

behind the moon the stars,

and behind the clouds the sun.


Wind blows through the sun,

casting rose-shadows

littered with petals and rain-splashes

and memories of times, fading fast,

when we dreamed we were children of the moon


and strewed the night with glitter, tossed stars into the sea.

Tides ebb and flow and roses fall,

dreams end, and dawn breaks, but in the waking,

behind the rushy water voices and the hissing of foam,

blackbirds sing.


Breathe in the warm earth,

berry-bright, lotus-light,

climb out of the dark.

Let life rose-blossom, bee-hum;

follow bird paths and river roots,

and when dusk falls soft as rain,

remember, after the silent night,

dawn will always come


from the ashes of night,

when the moon has bathed her children in dreams

and owls, silent-winged, have settled among the dark trees.

Dawn will come,

and the roses will all be red.


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Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

32 thoughts on “These roses will all be read”

  1. Oh–sighing! This is so lyrical. Beautiful!
    You and the Oracle work well together, and of course, she loves Redon.
    I had just posted mine and then saw yours was up. No surprise that we both have ships and seas and colors. . . and a similar sort of theme. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. It’s weird (or maybe it isn’t) but I took this one very slowly. I was convinced she was picking out the words, and when the right word wasn’t there, I didn’t tear my hair trying to cobble it together, just filled it in. The link poems are just elaboration, not diverting the theme, which wasn’t dark this time, more hopeful.
      I’ll have a peep at yours now ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. I’m happy she gave you the nudge then. It’s hard not to worry about the chicks, but I guess we just have to trust that things will work out. ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. I hope it did!
        I’ve had the usual parental worries–when they were sick, scared, heartbroken, etc,–but I’m fortunate that they’ve both always worked hard and are level-headed (despite being fanciful, too). ๐Ÿ™‚

      3. He hasn’t grown out of the hard partying age and it’s hard to get him to do anything he doesn’t like doing, like following doctor’s orders. They all have very clear ideas about most things, but he doesn’t like life to interfere with having a good time.

      4. Possibly. I heard it ๐Ÿ™‚ He has a sister living very close who has pestered him since he was born. It’s changed from the ambivalent stroking the cheek that just accidentally turned into a slap type of attention to being genuinely concerned. She was the one who told me he had seen the doctor with a pain in his jaw and didn’t intend to get the tests done. He made an appointment yesterday ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Oh I’m glad I’ve seen this one Jane! The second verse in italics starting ‘I know’.. it’s magic! But I loved the whole poem. And the painting is gorgeous. Feeling happy ๐Ÿ™‚

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