This blog's poems are from my published poetry book Star Steeds and Other Dreams: The Collected Poems (CFZ Press: Bideford, 2009) and are © Dr Karl P.N. Shuker, 2009. Except for author-credited review purposes, it is strictly forbidden to reproduce any of these poems elsewhere, either in part or in entirety, by any means, without my written permission.

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Sunday, 23 May 2010


'The Rose Garden' (Carl Frederick Aagaard, 1833-1895)

I wrote this poem in fondest tribute to my dear grandmother, Gertrude Timmins, who, throughout the summer each year, would spend many happy hours most days in her garden of roses, lovingly tending their showy blooms, and where as a child I too spent many equally happy hours with her. Sadly, my Nan and her garden are both long gone now, but for me they are captured forever within the kindly mirror of Memory, and for the rest of the world within my verses here.


Each sunny Summer afternoon
Amongst her roses royal
A widow old as Time itself
Laboriously would toil.

Her roses grew like ruby crowns
‘Midst thorns and rich green leaves.
So full of life, they seemed to speak,
Or so she would believe.

They lived for Beauty, Truth, and Life,
Like crimson furls of fire,
Whose rosy petals upwards soared,
E’er seeking to be higher.

Their scarlet hearts beat long and loud;
They only lived, it seemed,
To keep their beauty fresh and true,
Or so the lady dreamed.

For though the plants around them drooped,
They stayed unchanged through Time,
As if their very beauty gave
Them Life and Peace sublime.

And even when their own leaves died,
Their blooms rose up still higher –
Their love of Beauty burning more
Than any scorching fire.

They were their owner’s greatest joy,
For them she journeyed on,
Through Life’s strange world of constant change,
Her younger years far gone.

Till one fine morn she passed from sight,
Dismissing Life’s dark lane,
And to her flowers her soul returned,
Ne’er leaving them again.

Perhaps one day her form we’ll glimpse
Through Summer’s sunlit hours –
A Queen amongst the whispers of
Her bowing court of flowers

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