Poetic Women

Poetic Women

By J.Lynne Moore

Poetry has always been an outlet for the expression of emotions, but it is so much more than that. As with any type of writing, poetry, can and has encompassed every facet of life, within the realm of human understanding. Poetry can be simple and lighthearted; it can be dark and complex. It is a true art form worthy of our respect and support. The contributions of female poets, to this art form, have been extensive, far reaching and as influential as the poetesses themselves. I would like to highlight two poets who have certainly made their mark on the literary world.

Sarojini Naidu, the Nightingale of India was born in 1879, in Bikrampur (in present-day Bangladesh). Her father was a professor and founder of Hyderabad College, her mother was a poet. Mrs. Naidu is best known for her political career, as well as, her work as a fierce women’s rights activist. In 1925, she became the first Indian woman president of the National Congress and worked alongside Gandhi during the Round-Table Conference in 1931.

Pic # 3 Sarojini_Naidu

Ecstasy – By Sarojini Naidu

Cover mine eyes, O my Love!
Mine eyes that are weary of bliss
As of light that is poignant and strong
O silence my lips with a kiss,
My lips that are weary of song!
Shelter my soul, O my love!
My soul is bent low with the pain
And the burden of love, like the grace
Of a flower that is smitten with rain:
O shelter my soul from thy face!

As a poet, she is known as the Nightingale of India, a prolific poet penning many volumes of poetry on any number of subjects. Her first book of poetry “The Golden Threshold”, was published in the United Kingdom in 1905. Her poetry is considered gentle, rhythmic, and lyrical often being sung. Heartfelt themes full of nature and love flow through her words with spender and ease.

Sarojini Naidu was a giant in the world of women’s rights, fighting the whole of her adult life for equality between the genders. Her legacy has impacted the many generations that have come after her and I am sure she will be looked to for inspiration and guidance for generations to come.

Pic # 4 Sarojini Naidu

In The Forest – By Sarojini Naidu

HERE, O my heart, let us burn the dear dreams that are dead,
Here in this wood let us fashion a funeral pyre
Of fallen white petals and leaves that are mellow and red,
Here let us burn them in noon’s flaming torches of fire.

We are weary, my heart, we are weary, so long we have borne
The heavy loved burden of dreams that are dead, let us rest,
Let us scatter their ashes away, for a while let us mourn;
We will rest, O my heart, till the shadows are gray in the west.

But soon we must rise, O my heart, we must wander again
Into the war of the world and the strife of the throng;
Let us rise, O my heart, let us gather the dreams that remain,
We will conquer the sorrow of life with the sorrow of song.

Emily Dickinson is considered one of the greatest poets of all time. Her volume of work is studied in colleges and universities around the world. Emily was born in Amherst, Massachusetts, 1830. During her lifetime, only a handful of her poetry was published and it was heavily edited to fit in with the “convention” of the time. Emily was known as a recluse, spending most of her time at her parent’s home in her bedroom. It wasn’t until after her death in 1886 did the great volume of her work come to light.


For her time, Miss Dickinson’s poetry was highly unconventional, her use of staggered rhyme, varied punctuation, capitalization and descriptive imagery was seen as, quite out of the ordinary. After her death, her first major volume of published work was heavily edited and her original poems did not see the light of day until 1955 when scholar Thomas H. Johnson restored them to their original penned state. Her poetry is sublime, filled with a depth and intellect not matched by many. Though her poetry had a rocky start, in the literary world, she is now considered one of the greatest American poets.


Emily Dickinson’s poetry is a shining star among the classics of our age. Her example is one that all women, of all ages can hold in great regard, and look to as a bacon to be guided by. She challenged the convention of the day and paved her own path sticking to what was in her heart, penning words that have become immortal.

Hope Is The Thing With Feathers – By Emily Dickinson

‘Hope’ is the thing with feathers—
That perches in the soul—
And sings the tune without the words—
And never stops—at all—

And sweetest—in the Gale—is heard—
And sore must be the storm—
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm—

I’ve heard it in the chillest land—
And on the strangest Sea—
Yet, never, in Extremity,
It asked a crumb—of Me.

Ample Make this Bed – By Emily Dickinson

Ample make this bed.
Make this bed with awe;
In it wait till judgment break
Excellent and fair.

Be its mattress straight,
Be its pillow round;
Let no sunrise’ yellow noise
Interrupt this ground.

Women have always had a strong presence in the literary world, especially where poetry is concerned. The examples of strong, intelligent, creative women are all around us, if we take the time to seek out their tremendous contributions. From modern day trending poets to lyrical poetesses of the past, poetry holds the words of women from round the world, from every race, age, and background; words that champion the intellectual prowess of women.

© 2016 -2017 Cashmere Illusions.blog /J.Lynne Moore All Rights Reserved

Love Poems Through the Ages

Love Poems Through the Ages

By J.Lynne Moore


Valentine’s Day is all about love and expressing that love to the ones we care most about.  We send flowers, buy fancy chocolates, and have intimate dinners; all in the name of love.  However, one of the oldest forms of the human expression of love… is the love poem.

The art of stringing words together in romantic and lyrical fashion to express feelings, many times so deep that even finding the right words can be a difficult task, is as old as time.  Poets over the centuries have labored long and hard to find the perfect set of works to express their undying love and affection.

Have you ever wondered when we started expressing ourselves in this way?  When and where was the first love poem written?  And who wrote it?

Most historians considered the Song of Songs, also known as the Song of Solomon, to be the oldest love poem in existence, having been written sometime between 971-931 BC.  The Song of Songs, written by King Solomon, speaks of the intimate love shared by a husband and wife, and the maturing of their relationship.

However in the 19th century around 1846 or 1847 archeologists unearthed a pottery tablet found in the library of an Assyrian King.  Once it was dated and translated, it took the top spot as the oldest love poem in existence.  It is called The Song of Love for Shu-Sin and is believed to date back to 2000 BC.  This love poem is thought to be part of a yearly ritual, in which the king would partake in a symbolic marriage to one of the goddesses, to insure fertility for the coming year.

Jump forward a few thousand years and you will find, in truth, love poetry has changed little.  We still have men and women counting syllables, creating rhymes and perfecting their stanzas, chasing after the ultimate love poem.  Have any of them found it; the perfect combination of words, leading to the greatest love poem of all time?  Well, that is a matter of opinion.  We can, however, take a look at a few poems that have stood the test of time.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616) wrote – Sonnet 18:

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”

Lord Byron (1788-1824) gave us these lasting words in – She Walks in Beauty:

“She walks in beauty, like the night

of cloudless climes and starry skies:”

Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861) composed one of the most famous love poems ever – Sonnet 43:

“How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.”

E.E. Cummings (1894-1962) brought new life and a modern twist in his love poem – i carry your heart with me:

i carry your heart with me(i carry it in

my heart) i am never without it (anywhere

Well there you have it, a brief look at, the love poem through the ages.  Whether it’s “Roses are red, violets are blue” or “How do I love thee?” love poems are one of the oldest and most heartfelt ways for one human to express their love to one another.  Human beings cannot help but want to express the deep emotions that come with love; it seems that from the beginning of time we have done so, I don’t think we will stop any time soon.

So as you prepare for Valentine’s Day, consider writing your own love poem, it is a true expression of love.  I would like to leave you with what I consider one of the greatest love poems of the current age.

Pablo Neruda (1904-1973) gave us this priceless piece – Sonnet 17

I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,

or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.

I love you as certain dark things are to be loved,

in secret, between the shadow and the soul.


I love you as the plant that never blooms

but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;

thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance,

risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.


I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.

I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;

so I love you because I know no other way


than this: where I does not exist, nor you,

so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,

so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.


© 2016 -2017 Cashmere Illusions.blog /J.Lynne Moore All Rights Reserved



Heirloom Flowers: Floral Poetry

Heirloom Flowers: Floral Poetry

By J.Lynne Moore

Over the past few years the hobby of preserving and growing heirloom flowers has become more mainstream.  The beauty and intricacies of these ancient strains of flora are certainly well worth the effort it takes to maintain them.


A lane of Yellow led the eye

Unto a Purple Wood

Whose soft inhabitants to be

Surpasses solitude

If Bird the silence contradict

Or flower presume to show

In that low summer of the West

Impossible to know –

by Emily Dickinson

What are heirloom flowers or seeds?  Well the exact definition is a bit hard to pin down.  There seems to be a great deal of debate on exactly how to categorize them.  However, the most basic definition of heirloom seeds/plants/flowers are ones that are “open pollinated” and documented to have been nurtured and cared for from one generation to the next within a family or small community.  To be considered “open pollinated” they must be pollinated by insects, birds, wind or other natural means.  The plants must retain the original traits of the parent plant or stay “breed true”.  Most heirloom enthusiasts agree on the definition up to this point, however the “date point” is what causes the most debate.  The general rule of thumb is that seeds that date back to the end of WWII, around 1945 to 1950 can be considered heirloom; others believe they should be at least 100 years old.


My Pretty Rose Tree

A flower was offered to me;

Such a flower as May never bore.


But I said I’ve a Pretty Rose-tree.


And I passed the sweet flower o’er.



Then I went to my Pretty Rose-tree:

To tend her by day and by night.


But my Rose turnd away with jealousy:

And her thorns were my only delight.


by William Blake


There is another category of heirloom flowers and that is “commercial heirlooms”.  These seeds have been documented as heirlooms, many of them having been acquired from the families that cultivated them or from seed companies that went out of business.

One place you can observe all the splendor and beauty of heirloom flowers is at The Smithsonian Heirloom Garden, located at the National Museum of American History, Behring Center.  Here are just a few of the magnificent flowers you can encounter:


In the Spring:

Jupiter’s Beard: This delicate flower blooms all summer long and is a Mediterranean native.

Johnny-jump-ups or Violas: This brightly colored flower was known to have been put in potions to ease the heart.


In the Summer:

Moonshine Yarrow: This golden flower is very popular today although it is fairly new in terms of heirloom as it only dates back to the 1950.

Rose campion: These colorful and bushy plants date back to the 1700’s, Thomas Jefferson grew them in his garden and their thick leaves were used as lamp wicks.


In the Fall:

Japanese anemone or “Queen Charlotte”: The first appearance of this lovely flower in America was in 1907, however, it dates back to 1898 in Germany.

True forget-me-not: The forget-me-not is prevalent in mythology and ancient lore.  It is said that it got its name from a knight who was picking the flowers by a stream, he fell in the water and drown due to his armor but before he perished he tossed the bouquet of flowers to his love and said, “forget me not”.




Hollyhock bells

Ring along the lane

Daisy parasols

Catch the rain


Daffodil cups

Filled with nectar

Dahlia plates

Sunshine collector


Rose hip gems

Sparkling delight

Nightshades deadly

Purple fright


Morning glory sundial

Signals the marrow

Evening Primrose

Welcomes tomorrow


by J.Lynne Moore


Investing in the cultivation of heirloom seeds is just one way to preserve our heritage and our history, not just American history, but the history of the world.


© 2016 -2017 Cashmere Illusions.blog /J.Lynne Moore All Rights Reserved


Our Right to Liberty

Our Right to Liberty

By J.Lynne Moore

“The love of liberty is the love of others; the love of power is the love of ourselves.

(1778 – 1830)” ― William Hazlitt

No Prisoner be

By Emily Dickenson

No Prisoner be —

Where Liberty —

Himself — abide with Thee –

“With Liberty and Justice for All”, these are the closing words of the Pledge of Allegiance of the United States of America.  When Americans take this pledge, they are stating that they believe that liberty is one of the basic rights of every American.  In truth, we believe it is the right of every human, to be free to chase after liberty and to live within it.

“What light is to the eyes – what air is to the lungs – what love is to the heart, liberty is to the soul of man.”  ― Robert G. Ingersoll

Liberty is one of those words that has different meanings for different people.  Some people interpret it to mean anarchy; that liberty allows you to do whatever you want.  Others believe that liberties are only afforded to you by a government entity, only allowing people a set amount of rights and freedoms.  In reality, true liberty lies in the middle.  If everyone is allowed to define liberty on their own terms chaos will be allowed to rein.  However, we do in most cases need a form of sovereign government in place to ensure that liberties are not infringed upon by individuals or other nations.

The Old Stoic

By Emily Bronte

Riches I hold in light esteem,

And love I laugh to scorn;

And lust of fame was but a dream

That vanish’d with the morn:


And if I pray, the only prayer

That moves my lips for me

Is, “Leave the heart that now I bear,

And give me liberty!”


Yes, as my swift days near their goal,

‘Tis all that I implore:

In life and death a chainless soul,

With courage to endure


Liberty must be tempered with respect, virtue, and responsibility if it is to blossom. To this very subject Daniel Webster said, “A country cannot subsist well without liberty, nor liberty without virtue.”  We must respect the rights and liberties of other individuals even if our own beliefs and views are not the same.  We must agree that there are basic human virtues that transcend race, religion, sexuality and all else, i.e. murder is wrong.  We must also take responsibility for ourselves and make sure our actions do not infringe on other’s liberties.  As George Bernard Shaw put it in his play, Man and Superman, “Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.”  We in turn should be able to expect others to show us the same respect as we take responsibility for our actions.  There is some middle ground here for all of us to stand on.  A platform of basic human values upon which we can all agree that will, in the end, afford us the blessings of living within the glorious harmony that liberty can provide.  In our Declaration of Independence there is a phrase that speaks to this:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” – Declaration of Independence

Whether you believe in a Creator or not, it does not matter, every human being deserves these basic rights and of these three rights, it is Liberty that allows the other two to be achieved.

But we must remember, True liberty must be clothed in the garments of respect, virtue and responsibility, for if you strip them away, you are left with naked anarchy.


“What light is to the eyes – what air is to the lungs – what love is to the heart, liberty is to the soul of man.”  ― Robert G. Ingersoll


“Life without liberty is like a body without spirit.”

― Kahlil Gibran, The Vision: Reflections on the Way of the Soul



Edward Thomas, 1878 – 1917


The last light has gone out of the world, except

This moonlight lying on the grass like frost

Beyond the brink of the tall elm’s shadow.

It is as if everything else had slept

Many an age, unforgotten and lost

The men that were, the things done, long ago,

All I have thought; and but the moon and I

Live yet and here stand idle over the grave

Where all is buried. Both have liberty

To dream what we could do if we were free

To do some thing we had desired long,

The moon and I. There’s none less free than who

Does nothing and has nothing else to do,

Being free only for what is not to his mind,

And nothing is to his mind. If every hour

Like this one passing that I have spent among

The wiser others when I have forgot

To wonder whether I was free or not,

Were piled before me, and not lost behind,

And I could take and carry them away

I should be rich; or if I had the power

To wipe out every one and not again

Regret, I should be rich to be so poor.

And yet I still am half in love with pain,

With what is imperfect, with both tears and mirth,

With things that have an end, with life and earth,

And this moon that leaves me dark within the door.


© 2016 -2017 Cashmere Illusions.blog /J.Lynne Moore All Rights Reserved