Flower Power


NaPoWriMo DAY ELEVEN 11 April 2020



fragile, ephemeral,

their beauty enchanting,

next to bread

essential to life,

at times assume

a mighty role

in mankind’s theatre.


There was a time   

young hands,

facing guns in gloved fists,

reached out,

held dahlias, roses, marigolds,

bare fingertips

planted blossoms

in pointed rifle barrels

of National Guardsmen.


Peace-and-love hippies,

flower children

they called them,

was it before or after

the naked girl of mai lai?


Bloom against doom,

sweet, childish, yet

a gesture affirming life,

helped inflect

the course of history.


There’s another power:

Ikebana, art of flower

arrangement, lets

narcissus, peonies,

plum blossoms,

bamboo grass, greens


tell of the cosmic

order of things:

(wo)man’s place,

link betwixt

heaven and earth.


A symbolic arrangement

(asymmetry, uneven numbers,

balance, space left unfilled)

that’s open-ended:


a flower’s off color,

or unusual number of petals

a deliberate small defect,

a door to lead beyond

the cage of orderliness,

its laws of hierarchy:


the essential imperfection

nudging life to evolve

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