Virago Press, Penguin
GERMAINE Greer, pioneer
feminist, academic and passionate gardener, digs deep into verse's
treasure trove to come up with this thought-provoking, entertaining
Greer says her aim was
to "assemble a group of poems that would mean more to gardeners
than they would to people who don't garden".
This wide-ranging collection
is culled from 79 poets and split into seven categories: The Garden;
The Gardener; The Seasons and so on.
Represented are classical,
mediaeval, metaphysical and romantic poets. Emily Dickinson (dubbed
by Greer as, "perhaps the greatest of garden poets") and the
recently movie-venerated Sylvia Plath are here; so, too, is our
own - or nearly our own - Fleur Adcock. Adcock's An Emblem,
a playful tribute to mating slugs, is among our favourites.
Greer's footnotes on
each poet provide fascinating botanical and biographical insights.
The index, listing both the poets and the first lines, makes it
easy to find your way around.
The scarlet hard cover,
embossed with a peony, and the ribbon bookmark add a bonus touch.
Put this one on the gift-list for a special gardening friend.
Gardener, Issue 142, 2004, Page 28
(reproduced in Horticulture
in New Zealand:
Journal of the Royal NZ Institute of Horticulture 2005, 8(1): 20)
Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH