From Behind the Lion

Behind one of the Lions at the NY Public Library Main Branch

From Behind the Lion

no one will stare
they don’t care
of a feline
of stone design
seen from behind
“it’s not refined”

I say it’s always good to look at things
think off the hook and out of the box
walk around marvelous carvings to learn
scuputures are drawings in 3-D rocks


Written for:

visit The Imaginary Garden

Diolch yn fawr, beirdd! Which means, “thank you, poets!” In Welsh

The challenge was to write a few verses with one of the cywydds (awdl gywydd or cywydd llosgyrnog) and append a toddaid couplet..” So I chose to use one “Cywydd deuair fyrion” for which the form is:

x x x a
x x x a
x x x b
x x x b
x x x c
x x x c

and one Toddaid for which the form is:

x x x x x x x a x x
x x x x a x x x b

x x x x x x x c x x
x x x x c x x x b

then I decided to use one of my pictures. I am from New York and love the NY Public Library main branch. Most of you have seen it in movies, for example, Spiderman, The Day After Tomorrow and Ghostbusters. You always see the view of famous lion statues . With my warped sense of humor, I went and took a picture from behind. No one does that. (seriously, google New York Public Library Lions and you’ll see all kinds of views, I like the ones where they are covered with snow).  I wrote this poem about this picture, which I took.

If you want to know more about the lions (including their names) check out: goodbooksforyoungsouls library-lions-in-new-york

Posted on:


FormForAll – Poetic Devices: Image, Symbol, Metaphor, Allegory

Photo Credit: Mine (c) 2003 all rights reserved, credit if you use it, please.

About zongrik

For those of you who do not know the handle "zongrik," that would be Bat-Ami Gordin. Most people call me "Tammy." Bat-Ami means "daughter of my nation" in Hebrew. It's a heavy name to carry around. I answer to either name. I also answer to "mama." Some Basic Things about me: Animal lover, mom, poet/writer, dramatic soprano, photographer, teacher/tutor, CERT/Technician and, oh yeah, aerospace engineer. I consider myself "The Astro-Poet." To learn more about the origins of the word "zongrik" see whats-a-zongrik?

Posted on November 25, 2011, in, imaginary garden with real toads, Poetry and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. Excellent work. To see what othere[s don’t see takes imagination.

  2. Very successfully brought to life. Is that a typo in the last line or a real word? I’m sure millions simply pass the lions but only the true artist will see them for what they are.

  3. Cool form…I didn’t go to the garden for that one. I like your concrete example of viewing things from a different angle too!

  4. Wow that was really good! things you don`t think about when your out and about sometimes.

    • no YOU don’t think about these things, i do! 😮 that’s why i took the pic last time i was in NYC (which I think was 2003) and that’s why i wrong the poem

  5. The form? Oy, too complicated for me, but I LOVED this poem. I used to live in NYC and visited the library often. Also, there were two little boys who used to sit on either side of me at our last church (Lex is a pastor) and I called them “my little library lions.” Showed them a picture and they got it! Last time I saw this lion, it was at the PRIDE Parade two years ago. Two dads and their son were sitting on top of it! So much fun. Love your description of sculpture, too. Thanks! Amy

  6. i def think it is good to look at things from all perspectives…even behind…smiles.

  7. I live for the “other” side…well exposed here


  8. Loved the form, loved the picture and the word play. I remember the first time I went to NY. I was so excited that we were going to the library – but it was closed. We took pictures between the lions and I have a few from the back as well. I still haven’t been able to peruse the stacks. These days there seem to be so many other things that pull me in other directions. Thank you!

    • It’s so great to know that someone else looked at the back of the lions and took pix. 🙂

      I’ve been to the stacks. But actually, the science collection and music collection are not in that main building, so I hardly ever used that building. I went to the other facilities. My favorite branch is the one at Lincoln Center. SOOOOOO much music. What a grand collection of repertoire!!

  9. Great photo and lovely poem. k

  10. that’s one of the things i love to do…looking at things from different angles..getting new perspectives…you never know what you might see around the next corner…nice

  11. Perspective is everything. And what of the lions view?

  12. Sometimes you get the best view from behind – love this

  13. Enjoyed the poetry form and picture … I missed this sight when we visited NY this spring…

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