How I loved those spiky suns,

rooted stubborn as childhood

in the grass, tough as the farmer’s

big-headed children—the mats

of yellow hair, the bowl-cut fringe.

How sturdy they were and how

slowly they turned themselves

into galaxies, domes of ghost stars

barely visible by day, pale

cerebrums clinging to life

on tough green stems. Like you.

Like you, in the end. If you were here,

I’d pluck this trembling globe to show

how beautiful a thing can be

a breath will tear away.


Jean Nordhaus, A Dandelion for My Mother


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