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Posts Tagged ‘sunflowers’

For your birthday, I’m sending you

the sunflowers in my garden,

which is to say, I send you

something unfinished,

something with so much room

left to grow.

America, I send you

the space above the sunflowers

a space they will reach into.

There is so much promise

of beauty in you, America,

so much blossoming yet to do.

America, you’re right if you think this is symbolic.

So I send you the sunflower’s roots, too.

We all know what happens without them.

America, here’s what I most want to say—

I believe in you, America, and all the hands

that tend your soil. Happy Birthday.

It’s time to get out of your own shade.

Happy Birthday. You’ve got this.  

Home of the brave.

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They are dead,

the sunflowers,

all petal-less and brown,

and I almost uprooted them

from the garden,

almost tossed aside

their tall brittle stalks,

their heavy bowed heads,

 

but see today how

the small gray birds

flutter amongst the dead

and dive for dark seeds,

how the garden air shimmers

with dozens of wings.

 

Patience, I think,

with whatever we believe

is lost—

so much beauty survives

even after a frost.

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What Vincent Knew

 

 

 

I like to gossip with the sunflowers—

about who is holding their head up high

and who is nodding off. We are generous,

of course, and note it’s hard

 

to hold up your head all day.

So tiresome, a few of them grumble,

this showing up, this relentless drive

to meet the sun every morning, the weight

 

of all this outward cheerfulness. Yes, I say,

and hum as I pull the yellowed leaves

off the bottom of their stalks. What is dead

crumbles easily in my hands. In morning light,

 

the golden petals are impossibly more gold.

What is the ache that sometimes comes

with beauty? I face east. Though I know

it is there, I can’t see my own shadow.

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