Rosa Multiflora Gore

Rosa Multiflora Gore

Sometimes, I feel a curmudgeon
bludgeoning bush, butchering
blood-red boughs,
snipping grounded throats, clippers straining
at my hip–
but this green deserves
an invader–

So, despite sure wounds,
I wage the losing war, wade in,
lending my mettle
to soft-speared grass, show-spiked
Queen Anne’s Lace, my liege.




Rosa Multiflora, also called rambling rose, is an invasive species that has moved into my area of the Catskills.  The flowers are actually incredibly pretty and fragrant too, but it would, if it could, crowd out all the native plants, and make fields one big thorn bush (a  Sleeping Beauty mid-nap kind of landscape.)  Every once in a while, I undergo battle against it.  (The thorns are everywhere and sharp.)

The poem with title (and even hyphenated words, counting as two–HA!) is exactly 55 words–it was written for Hedgewitch’s Flash 55 prompt on With Real Toads.  (As pretty much always, all rights reserved on text and drawing. )

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36 Comments on “Rosa Multiflora Gore”

  1. Grace Says:

    I love the b words (bludgeoning bush, butchering
    blood-red boughs,) very crisp ~ I hear you on those invaders, its a losing battle but we try anyway ~ Have a lovely weekend K ~

  2. I love a rambling rose, and did not know that they had turned nasty invaders in your part of the world – conditions must be optimum. Good to know you take up your sword and shield against them.

    I also really like the play of sounds throughout the poem – all those solid consonants and closed vowels in the first stanza and the softening towards the end with the w and s sounds and the longer vowels. Technically appealing and fair commentary on a current dilemma. Good poetry.

  3. hedgewitch Says:

    I’m restraining my lefty self from reading anything into bush and Gore, beyond the blood that roses exact as their tribute when we confront them with shears and secateurs. I have a rose I call Cthulu, for obvious reasons. Like Kerry, I really enjoyed the sounds in this, the word curmudgeon itself, especially, and obviously, *created* to rhyme with bludgeon, and all the ‘s’ words add up to a slick sibilant finish. BTW, I’d like to borrow your elephant next time I prune–that is one prehensile trunk. ;_) Thanks for playing 55, k.

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Hadn’t thought of bush/gore! And would probably whack them both at this point– dislike bush more, of course, but feel gore has definitely let down the side with all his shenanigans.


      • hedgewitch Says:

        Totally agree. I watched a lot of current tv before he sold it to al-jazeera, and the man is addicted to himself–the kind that can’t walk by a mirror without smiling for it. Bush–well, what can you say about a man who paints his toes in the bathtub? ;_)

      • ManicDdaily Says:

        Ha. Well, that’s probably his good side! k.

  4. claudia Says:

    there are def. plants that need cutting back to not get in the others way… i love rambler roses though and my garden is full with them… love their wildness and i mostly let them have their way even though i know i shouldn’t … oy

  5. grapeling Says:

    I wonder if you’d craft a pen from your end notes, from the line, “the thorns are everywhere and sharp” 🙂 ~

  6. brian miller Says:

    ha. if wwe could get rid of the scrub trees that somehow jumped into our flowers i would be happy…they are my war this year….

  7. Love your slanted rhymes in this .. (I was so inspired by your dVerse article).. indeed those roses can be quite invasive.. In Sweden it’s more Rosa Rugosa.. that enter everywhere… I guess our harsher climate create other invasive species…

  8. The language is somewhat thorny, yet also attractive, just like your rosa multiflora. Well done.

  9. markwindham Says:

    the frustration resounds in the opening sound play. I’m sure they do not stand a chance.

  10. I really liked the alliteration and how it added to the rhythm of the poem. 🙂

  11. Other Mary Says:

    What a great 55! I’ve been doing some pruning here too, though it’s winter kill on my roses, so I have been getting nipped myself! Good luck fighting the good fight!

  12. lilystrange Says:

    I guess it’s a bit like ivy on walls. Beautiful but destructive.
    I enjoyed the little drawing too!
    My 55 is here.

  13. I love your drawing!! I’ve been there all too often…your closing, showing liege to Queen Anne’s Lace made me smile…nicely done and way to stick to the challenge…I cheated with the hyphens…just a little! 😉

  14. Not only did I love your poem. I did, but also the information you provided after. It’s fascinating how nature works and species, which look pretty harmless and innocuous on the outside, can be terribly aggressive.

    Greetings from London.

  15. Steve King Says:

    I don’t have rambling rose, but there are plenty of others to attack my smallish realm of plantings. I can relate to this so well. Wish I could put it all in 55 the way you do! I love Kerry’s comment above about wielding sword and shield. If memory serves, “Sword and Shield” was the motto of the old KGB. I think that gives a good character note on your relentless onslaught against the invader. Good luck!!
    Steve K.

  16. coalblack Says:

    Fight the good fight, K!

  17. Helen Says:

    Rosa Multiflora ~ sounds much more civilized than Kudzu! I am in love with your drawing, Karin. And the poem ….

  18. Susan Says:

    I too let the roses ramble, but given the sleeping beauty image, will definitely start cutting. Allegory is all powerful!

  19. janehewey Says:

    the sounds and textures here are stellar! gosh, i love every word. I think the 55 prompts are so effective, it certainly works here. great last line especially.

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