Drawings by Judy Morris with accompanying poems by Ian Gibbins,
exhibited at the Hahndorf Academy, Hahndorf, 13th June – 26th July, 2015.
Floribunda was originally conceived by Judy Morris as a collection of drawings inspired by native and introduced plants growing in the greater Adelaide region. Judy is particularly attracted to the more unusual shapes and textures of these plants, carefully observing and documenting their emergence and eventual turnover.
The poems in Floribunda were written by Ian Gibbins in response to Judy’s drawings, their titles, and meanings hidden within the formal Latin titles of the plants. They imagine an expedition into unknown, dangerous country, the explorers struggling with the environment and themselves in equal measure.
Here is the poem relating to the title image:
Helleborus x hybridus
– Winter Rose –
Parenthetic warnings to maintain distance,
too often prone to swoon.
Temperatures fell, vacated sodden nights,
reft seditious drowse, queathed stoney quave.
We should have predicted she would follow
her own route, her singular disjunctive path.
Tough and perpetually feisty, resilient turns
of phrase poised sharp on her perfumed lips.
Yet she surprised us, and faltered, overtaken
by qualm on a cusp of illusion. Pallor dissolute,
her mien a chimera of ghostly translucence,
she withered, cruelled by mysterious fates.
For a moment, she stayed her chrysalis dream,
held our consternation at bay, spurned our
vexed avail. “I have two abiding wishes,”
she murmured through her gid, “bathe me
in freshly budded flowers, abrim with astral
blush; and, before the sapphire moonrise,
cede me, with neither prejudice nor condition,
three embracing breaths of pure unsullied air.”
To see more about Floribunda
To buy the Floribunda book with all Judy’s drawings and Ian’s poems