10×8 inches, oil on panel
private collection


 I would if I could choose  
Age and die outwards as a tulip does;  
Not as this iris drawing in, in-coiling  
Its complex strange taut inflorescence, willing  
Itself a bud again – though all achieved is  
No more than a clenched sadness, 

The tears of gum not flowing.  
I would choose the tulip’s reckless way of going;  
Whose petals answer light, altering by fractions  
From closed to wide, from one through many perfections,  
Til wrecked, flamboyant, strayed beyond recall,  
Like flakes of fire they piecemeal fall. 

~ by Edith Joy Scovell (1907-1999)