The egg-yolk yellow flowers are popping up once again now that spring is in full speed. I like them except that they go places that I don’t really want them to be. They are taking up home in my lawn mostly, as they battle with the crabgrass to win our backyard. But dandelions, as sturdy as their roots make them and as proliferate as their airy seeds trigger, have a delicate and sweet nature to them. In the language of flowers they signify faithfulness and happiness. That makes sense to me. They are a really happy bright yellow and they faithfully come up each year.
Dandelions are also functional little flowers. They can be used to make wine, the leaves can be sautéed for a tasty dish and the flowers can be fashioned into a chain and worn as a cheery crown. And what child—young or old—doesn’t enjoy blowing the seeds everywhere?
By Peter Campion
After the cling of roots and then the “pock”
when they gave way
the recoil up the hand
was a small shock
of emptiness beginning to expand.
Milk frothing from the stems. Leaves inky green
Like blissed-out childhood play
they snarled in tangled curls on our driveway.
It happens still. That desolating falling
and then our neighborhood
seems only sprawling
loops…like the patterns eaten on driftwood:
even the home where I grew up (its smell
wood-smoke and bacon grease)
seems just a shell
of lathe and paper. But this strange release
follows: this tinge like silver and I feel
the pull of dirt
again, sense mist uncurling
no architecture hidden behind the world
except the stories that we make unfolding:
as if our sole real power
were the power
of children holding
this flower that is a weed that is a flower.