Urban Physic Garden

 

Medicinal Plants Poetry Project

Wild Bergamot

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Earl Grey It’s the kindred nature of scent, that one recalls another even as it announces itself. We share names. Bergamot: like the orange but not. The fruit, the oil, the tea, the man they named it for. The smell of history, yours, and mine. The mazy path from your nostril to your brain, its […]

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Viper’s Bugloss

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˜ a most gallant herb of the sun ˜ Flaring up with its pilot flame blue like nothing I have ever seen, blue as the rare blue sky of June, Midsummer Common hot as its name. ˜ Blueweed, Snakeflower, Viper’s Grass ˜ The herb-seller’s reeling these off, but I’m testing the words from the tag […]

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Valerian

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This openmouth molasses, a tar trap for nightwise cats crowding your coverlet, leaning in to lap the exhaled air that’s thick with pungent hedgerow, black as canal silt.     Rowyda Amin (From Herbarium, a new poetry anthology. Launch and reading 22 July)

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Tea Tree

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Adolescence Joseph Banks: “…not one was once observed to stop and look toward the ship; they pursued their way in all appearance entirely unmoved by the neighbourhood of so remarkable an object as a ship must necessarily be to people who have never seen one.” And when we were older, we were not explorers but […]

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Tansy

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hold me at the door by pulse points hold me to memorials     their yellow love me love me not     over     & bald to the fuzz of keeping going     where immortality is a bitter gong     played in multiples     strewed     this way of […]

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Sweet Woodruff

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Click on image below to see full size.     Amy Cutler (From Herbarium, a new poetry anthology. Launch and reading 22 July)

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St John’s Wort

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ward me off     is it the way of all saints wreathed over eikons &     then high strength & standardised     sunshine supplement     my grand multidollar placed in tincture vats     nervine & vulnerary     I would stuff you in my mouth     confess against myself […]

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Skullcap

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The Butterfly Visits the Skullcap She lands like a blown umbrella on your ribs, spokes taking root – a terrible shot at putting up a tent. The wind will test your fidelity, her resolve. Each skinny thorn of leg ends in a tongue, and you are all tongue, a purple cloak spread across the puddle […]

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Rosemary

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Click on image below to view full size.     Laura Forman; typesetting by Joe Stephenson (From Herbarium, a new poetry anthology. Launch and reading 22 July)

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Purslane

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to eat verdolaga with pork & tomatoes only in provence farmers put pourpier in wild mesclun o bonne femme de la rue de rivoli we will hunt the glistrida at dusk making sure not to tread on the almost turkish semizotu & the suberi-hiyu of absolute japan o bonne femme de la rue des rosiers […]

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