Saturday, 22 April 2017

poetry 2017 / 075

In honor of Earth Day, I’d like to challenge you to write a georgic. The original georgic poem was written by Virgil, and while it was ostensibly a practical and instructional guide regarding agricultural concerns, it also offers political commentary on the use of land in the wake of war. The georgic was revived by British poets in the eighteenth century, when the use of land was changing both due to the increased use of enlightenment farming techniques and due to political realignments such as the union of England, Scotland, and Wales.
Your Georgic could be a simple set of instructions on how to grow or care for something, but it could also incorporate larger themes as to how land should be used (or not used), or for what purposes.


the comfort and safety
of an internet browser
behind a virtual private network
order online for discreet service,
delivery in a plain brown parcel.
Growing mediums of composted soil,
Coco Coir or hydroponics –
adequate lighting for maximum yield
choose your bulbs carefully.
Germinate seeds in rooting plugs,
seed trays or paper towels,
with the second pair of true leaves
transfer into growing medium.
Grow on, water well without soaking,
plenty of light for eight hours a day,
add nitrogen to encourage growth.
Check the leaf shoots for buds or pollen sacs
and remove plants with pollen.
At half full size adjust the daylight
twelve hours on, twelve hours off,
watch the growth spurt for six weeks.
Slow down the nitrogen;
Phosphorous and Potassium
are good for developing flowers.
After four to six weeks the buds should be ready
look for the white hairs to turn inward--
some might turn yellow--
harvest the buds and hang upside down.
After two weeks, hang in mason jars;
check to avoid dampness
cure for another two weeks to several months
longer makes smoother.

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