Revolutionary Petunias is a collection of poetry by Alice Walker, published in 1973. The title poem, "Revolutionary Petunias," tells the story of a woman who plants petunias in her yard as a form of resistance against the racism and oppression that she experiences in her daily life.
Throughout the poem, the speaker describes the various ways in which the petunias serve as a source of strength and hope for her. She talks about how they bloom with vibrant colors, defying the expectations of those who try to suppress them. The petunias are described as "shy but revolutionary," symbolizing the quiet yet powerful resistance of the speaker and other marginalized people.
In addition to the title poem, Revolutionary Petunias includes several other poems that explore themes of race, gender, and social justice. In "One Child of One's Own," the speaker reflects on the importance of having a sense of identity and agency in a world that often tries to define and control women. In "We Are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For," the speaker encourages readers to embrace their own power and potential to create positive change in the world.
Overall, Revolutionary Petunias is a poignant and powerful collection of poetry that speaks to the struggles and resilience of marginalized communities. Through her vivid and evocative language, Alice Walker gives voice to the experiences of those who are often silenced and celebrates their strength and resilience in the face of adversity.
Revolutionary Petunias by Alice Walker
Wearing cameras They never hear But relive their victory Every year And take it home With them. Young Future Farmers As paleface warriors Grub Live off the land Pretend Indian, therefore Man, Can envision a lake But never a flood On earth So cleanly scrubbed Of blood: They come before the rock Jolly conquerers. I ponder the exchange Itself And salvage mostly The leaning. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Water petunia plants after pruning, then apply a liquid fertilizer for blooming plants. In 1983, Walker became the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize for fiction with her novel The Color Purple, which also won the National Book Award.
Now I no longer recall The Catechism Or brood on the Genesis Of life No. The odor of smoke, oak leaves, honeysuckle. . Petunias can be planted in borders, mass plantings, or in containers or hanging baskets. But from above The lookout tower Floor An eagle widespread In solid gravel Stone Takes shape Below; The Cherokees raised it Long ago Before westward journeys In the snow Before the National Policy slew Long before Columbus knew.
Revolutionary Petunias: And Other Poems by Alice Walker
Petunias planted in shade will stretch for the sunlight, creating long, leggy plants. Even in the midst of the call for change, these poems reveal a deep yearning for individual connection to others, as well as a deeply personal connection to nature. For My Sister Molly Who in the Fifties Once made a fairy rooster from Mashed potatoes Whose eyes I forget But green onions were his tail And his two legs were carrot sticks A tomato slice his crown. Her other books include The Third Life of Grange Copeland, Meridian, The Temple of My Familiar, and Possessing the Secret of Joy. The grace with which we embrace life, in spite of the pain, the sorrows, is always a measure of what has gone before. In new patent leather shoes It wasn't so bad And if it rained The graves dropped open And if the sun was shining You could take some of the Flowers home In your pocket book.
Her own two babies dead before she came. Her other novels include The Third Life of Grange Copeland, Meridian, The Temple of My Familiar, and Possessing the Secret of Joy. You don't even ask After a while What makes them lie so Awfully straight And still. They do not know the rock They love Lives and is bound To bide its time To wrap its stony wings Around The innocent eager 4-H Club. In these verses are her most visceral reactions to a moment in history that would shape the country, and that she herself influenced through words and advocacy.
. If there's a picture of Jesus underneath The coffin lid You might, during a boring sermon, Without shouting or anything, Wonder who painted it; And how he would like All eternity to stare It down. Came to canning and vegetable gardens big as fields. However, petunias can often become long and leggy, and at that point, blooming will slow down. Who noticed how Much They drank And acted womanish With they do-rags We were nieces. .
Have been known to sink. If the petunias are severely leggy, it's safe to cut the plants back to just 2 or 3 inches of stem, as long as a few leaves are left intact. Pinch the top inch or so of each petunia stem off at planting. A hard worker, with rough, moist hands. For memories of before I was born, when teacher and grandmother loved each other; and later above the ducks made of soap and the orange- legged chicks Miss Reynolds drew over my own small hand on paper with wide blue lines.
Moved chairs about Hung things from walls Ordered baths Frowned on wasp bites And seemed to know the endings Of all the tales I had forgot. In a range of bright colors and both single and double forms, petunias are easy to grow, grow quickly, and have a long blooming season. . Came to multiple measles, chickenpox, and croup. But seen from the angle of her death.
Came to fields to plow. In her public life, Walker has worked to address problems of injustice, inequality, and poverty as an activist, teacher, and public intellectual. Deadhead, or remove, spent petunia blooms regularly. Tip Be sure to plant petunias in full sunlight. And they were almost Always good For a nickel Sometimes a dime. Came to leaning houses one story high. V It is not until I see my first grade teacher review her body that I cry.
She is an Oregon State University Master Gardener and Master Naturalist and holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative nonfiction writing. To cover themselves with wild ivy, blackberries. To drop open without warning. Deadheading will force the plant to continue blooming for as long as possible and will help prevent long, leggy plants. I used to stop and Linger there Within the cleanswept tower stair Rock Eagle pinesounds Rush of stillness Lifting up my hair. Excerpted from Revolutionary Petunias and Other Poems by Alice Walker.
Stagger-prune the petunias so that you still have plenty of petunias blooming in the flower bed. Or heard, or knew, or felt. Came to straightened hair, Noxzema, and feet washing at the Hardshell Baptist church. Pinned to the earth The eagle endures The Cherokees are gone The people come on tours. Fertilize the petunias every two weeks with a dilute, water-soluble, complete fertilizer. Came to grandchildren not of her blood whom she taught to dip snuff without sneezing.