Issue 1 Index

A Herbal Amulet for Geraldine Monk
 

 

Goat’s Rue
Galega Officinalis

 

smooth apt and pale
abiding long

 

Erythronium dens Canis
Dog’s Tooth Violet

somewhat broad, elegant and blunt
governed by the Moon’s
                       well of
                       milk

 

Rattle Grass
Rhinanthus

reeds red when ripe boiled in wine
drawing out dimming sight
                       or
                       cough

 

Angelica
Angelica Archangelica

 

and the Moon in her good aspect
defends and comforts the sad heart
                        resists
                        poison

 

Lovage
Ligusticum Levisticum

 

 

smooth and shining
divided into many parts
                        spreading
                        much

 

Dog Rose
Rosa Canina

known to do great things
of pleasant grateful acidity
                        conserving
                        in sweetness

 

Iris
Fleur-de-Lys

the leaves are nervous, broad
the roots gargled in the mouth
                        help pains and noises
                        in the ears

 

Narcissus Pseudonarcissus
Common Daffodil

Lidelillies, Daffy-downdillies
pressed out with some white-wine
                        against all corrupt
                        filth

 

Eruca Sylvestris
Wild Rocket

expels worms and other noisesome creatures
leaves with slender cuts and jags
                        strikes into the
                        head

 

Misseltoe
Viscous Quercus

 

 

a powerful attractive ripens and discusses
the juice dropped into the ears
                        one flat heart-fashioned
                        seed

Orpine
Sedum Telephium

rising greater than the wild in shadowy fields
the Moon bound to the throat
                        hurt or wound
                        anointed

 

Nasturtium Aquatica Sisymbrium
Water Cresses

consumes gross humours winter left behind
hot sharp horns spread forth at night
                        in the morning
                        washed away

 

Kleavers
Galium Aparine

fitting for the change of season that is coming
closing up the lips of green wounds
                        in experience

the seed is ripe and falleth
whence it springeth up again
and not from the old roots
and the body will not be bound

 

This text was written for and performed at the UK launch of The Salt Companion to Geraldine Monk
in Sheffield, September 2007. Medicinal plants from Culpeper’s Herbal spell out her name in acrostic,
and the Culpeper text is then distilled in sequence.

[Christine Kennedy is a writer and artist based in Sheffield. She specialises in works which combine
the visual and the verbal. Her recent publications include Nineteen Nights in San Francisco
(West House Books / The Cherry On The Top Press, 2007); and, with David Kennedy,
a contribution to The Salt Companion to Geraldine Monk.]

Copyright © 2008 by Christine Kennedy, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions
of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of
the journal and consent of the author.