Pat Jones

The Lilac

by Jean Kreiling

The tiny lilac buds just barely bloom:
they affably unwink their pastel eyes
at brasher blossoms, emanating sighs
of self-assured but delicate perfume.
Reliable, requiring little care,
companionably clustered lilac flowers
attest to understatement’s heady powers,
as neatly gathered nuance fills the air.
And while the compact purple clouds expand
and multiply, their swoon-inducing scent
persuades a jaded world that it was meant
to bow before brief beauty’s mute command.
The lilac’s life of small perfections poses
a challenge rarely met by men or roses.

Jean L. Kreiling teaches music at Bridgewater State College in Massachusetts, and previously taught English at Western Carolina University; she frequently gives presentations on music and poetry at scholarly conferences. Her award-winning poetry has appeared in several print and on-line journals, including The Beethoven Journal, Contemporary Sonnet, Ekphrasis, The Evansville Review, The Formalist, The London Poetry Review, The Pennsylvania Review, and SLANT.