In the historical passion
of fashion for nature,
for garb adorned
with objets trouvés,
our ancestors had tastes
macabre and beauteous,

satisfied appetites
sartorial and carnivorous.

We love the wild.
As Wilde once said,
each man kills
the things he loves,
but now we mourn
the things we lost:

sartorial elegance
came at a cost.

The remnants of decadence
have become exhibits,
examples of nature
raped and robbed:
an evening dress
adorned with fireflies

and a beetle-wing case
bejewelled bodice.

Elegant earrings
wrought from iridescent
heads of red-legged
honeycreeper birds
set off the panache
of a fashionable cape

made of fur from our relatives:
monkeys and apes.

Kim M. Russell, 2018

Image result for V & A fashioned from nature
Poster found on Moda Lisboa


My response to Imaginary Garden with Real Toads Poems In April – L’ Arora

Sanaa says she’s spicing things up a little this Sunday by introducing a form which she came across a few days ago: the A L’ Arora. She explains that it was created by Laura Lamarca and consists of eight-lined stanzas. The rhyme scheme is a, b, c, d, e, f, g, f, with no syllable count per line and the minimum length for the poem is 4 stanzas with no maximum length stipulation. She says what she loves most about this form is that we don’t need to focus all our energy on rhyming and can come forth with a poem naturally.

I found my poem in an article I read in The Times yesterday about an upcoming exhibition at the V & A that ‘looks at the way designers have been inspired by nature – but also helped destroy it’.

28 thoughts on “Catalogued

  1. This is incredibly profound, Kim!❤️ I love that your poem was inspired by an article. What struck me most was “Elegant earrings wrought from iridescent heads of red-legged honeycreeper birds.” .. I wonder what they will think of next! Thank you so much for writing to the prompt!❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Kim, I so admire the hard work that you put into this form piece – not only with an eye to the rhymes but also the careful construction of a poem with a message.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think you’ve done a great job with the form, it’s a bit constraining, even if it doesn’t seem like it at first – so this piece is impressive, because it doesn’t seem like a prescribed follow the rules on reading.

    Your choice of subject and exploration of the dueling nature of creation and destruction, is well layered here (sheesh, I’m playing on words) – carefully examined and really picks up the account from when we first landed on Terra firma and began to adorn ourselves, not only of need, but also as a way of markings, cultures and status.

    I really appreciate how you’ve used such choice words too, like
    objets trouvés, macabre and beauteous, sartorial and carnivorous. etc.

    This is a deceptive piece, a walk through history and we land to the now – and it’s actually rather quite the gem Kim!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are also some very beautiful exhibits that are not adorned with bits of animals but some have been coloured with revolting mixtures of dye!


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