Treasure Island

Paul Hartal


Apology to a Dandelion


Dressed in luxuriant yellow
You can find her everywhere.
She crops up in green meadows
And well-manicured lawns
In picayune cracks of aged walls
Or along concrete sidewalks
In the heart of downtown
‘Dent de lion' the lion's tooth.

Some call her Wild Endive.
An admirable and humble flower
In spring her strong taproots
Send up through naked stems
Dazzling bright and intrepid blossoms
And white botanical lactic juice.
Kind, gentle and beautiful Dandelion
She is spiritual and eccentric
A celibate perennial wild plant
That has refused to live a sex life.

Her ovaries produce fertile seeds
Without having to be pollinated.
Her yellow flowers slowly turn
Into silvery white puffballs
Fitted with tufts that fly in the wind
Like a myriad of tiny parachutes.

Why are we so cruel to her?
She is so peaceful, tender and charming
A marvel of nature, tonic and stimulant
The medicinal plant ‘taraxacum officinale'.
She promotes health and removes poisons
And can be turned
Into fabulous salad greens
Or even into tea and wine.

So why do we hate her so much?
Why do we kill her in our gardens?
Why do we poison her
With deadly chemicals
Which harm Mother Earth and Us?

O, gracious dandelion
I ask for your forgiveness and apologize.

Submitted: Saturday, June 30, 2012

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