Queen Anne’s Lace

Queen-Anne’s Lace

By William Carlos Williams


Her body is not so white as

anemony petals nor so smooth—nor

so remote a thing.


It is a field

of the wild carrot taking

the field by force;  the grass

does not raise above it.


Here is no question of whiteness,

white as can be, with a purple mole

at the center of each flower.


Each flower is a hand’s span

of her whiteness. Wherever

his hand has lain there is

a tiny purple blemish.



Each part

is a blossom under his touch

to which the fibres of her being

stem one by one, each to its end,

until the whole field is a

white desire, empty,


a single stem,

a cluster, flower by flower,

a pious wish to whiteness gone over—

or nothing.



13 thoughts on “Queen Anne’s Lace”

  1. Lovely images to accompany this poem. Although a fan of WCW, I don’t recall having read this poem before. Thank you for sharing. I shot a few frames of some Queen Ann’s Lace last week, and have been thinking that I need to go find some more — fields full. You’ve inspired me to find some time to do that this week.

  2. How gorgeous, Jeff! I especially like the one with the sun behind the flower!

    I’m sorry it didn’t work out for us to meet in NYC. I’m sure we’ll make it there again. Bu then again, it’s a good excuse for you to come to Ecuador. Right?

    Trying to catch up with my blog reading. Kind of daunting. Hope you’re doing well.

    Hugs from Ecuador,

    1. Kathy,

      Great that you had some time to catch up to things and check in with blog readers!

      Thank you for your nice comments about my photos! Yes I like the one with sun behind too!

      Some day I just may come to Ecuador.



  3. I am very late coming to this, Jeff. Think you posted it during one of my *off on-line* times during the summer. Queen Anne’s Lace is so fascinating and you captured it so beautifully. Even now when it’s drying up it can look so interesting. (I’m not sure I could pick a favorite from among your photos. They are all intriguing.)

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