Ghazal paint chip poem

Linda Kruschke’s paint chip poetry prompt this week is to write a ghazal. The definition of a ghazal along with the paint chip colours and examples of the form including Linda’s new one may be found here.

She writes:
Today I am challenging you to write a ghazal of at least five couplets. For the refrain phrase, I would like you to select one of the paint chip words or phrases below.
The paint chip words and phrases you have to work with are sour grapes, arboretum, aura, coral, green light, blizzard, and primrose path. As mentioned above, I’d like you to choose one of these as the refrain for your ghazal. Use as many others as you choose.
If you can weave in a Valentine’s Day theme, extra bonus points for you.

A Ghazal for Valentine’s Day

Red roses are the flora
Which give the Valentine’s Day aura.

Not receiving a card might
Sour the Valentine’s Day aura.

A Valentine’s Day trip out
To an arboretum has its own aura.

A Valentine’s Day blizzard
Could thwart plans or give a new aura.

Early spring flowers line a
Primrose path with a cheerful aura.

Sour grapes turn off the green light
Spoiling the Valentine’s Day aura.

I’m called Susan not Coral
And this ghazal has its own aura.


Valentine’s Day

Today, in case you haven’t noticed, is Valentine’s Day.  Last year I used a writing prompt about Valentine’s Day and came up with this post.

This year it was a comment I read on a blog, which prompted me to revisit the subject.  Someone commented

 I’m glad we don’t set great store by Valentine’s Day in this country.

I immediately wondered which part of this country she meant.  Last year I mentioned hairdressers’ shop near my home decorating for Valentine’s Day.  Many restaurants also decorate and innumerable couples go out for a romantic meal on or around Valentine’s Day.  In this permissive age I often wonder what people think if it happens to be convenient for me to go out for lunch with a female friend on February 14th!  In the past observant waiters might have noticed our rings, but with so-called equal marriage, that clue is no longer any help.

Valentine’s Day appears in literature too.  The story which springs to my mind is in “Far from the madding crowd” by Thomas Hardy.  I studied it at school (for O-level) and our class went to see the film.  I find Hardy’s books depressing, but this one slightly less so than others I have read.

Although it is a saint’s day, it is not celebrated by Church of England.  In February there is Candlemas, when we remember the presentation of Christ in the temple, and St Matthias’ Day.  He was chosen to be an Apostle after Judas had betrayed Jesus and only eleven Apostles remained. (Acts 1).

Thus there is a gap between February 2 and February 24 with no saints’ days.  Personally I do not object if hubby decides to give me a present on February 14, but for young people the commercialism around yet another date could be a cause of stress and unreal expectations.  By all means have a bit of fun, but don’t spend more than you can afford and if you are single be honest in your dealings with any potential spouse(s).  If you feel overlooked on Valentine’s Day, try not to be sad.  The future may be better than you think.  It may not seem helpful to a young person to know that some people marry for the first time much later in life and are extremely happy in their later years.

This year Lent begins on 18 February (Ash Wednesday).  Shrove Tuesday, when it is traditional to eat pancakes, is the previous day.

What are your thoughts about Valentine’s Day?  Is it important in your locality?