Alyssum finds a crack
Pushes up through hard concrete
A little plant pushed through the earth. First its head appeared, a leaf, then a translucent green stem.
The little plant waved its leaf happily in the cool, Spring air. It was happy to be alive.
Each day, the plant grew. Another leaf appeared, then another and the stem grew longer.
Finally one day, a bright yellow flower appeared on the stem. The plant was happy.
“I am so beautiful,” it said proudly.
“You are not.” The plant heard a voice over in the corner of the garden. There, a larger plant grew, with a sturdy stalk and large dark green leaves.
“I beg your pardon?” The little plant spoke politely. It was sure it had not heard correctly.
“You are a weed,” the larger plant said disdainfully. “Now myself, I am a sunflower.”
“But where is your flower?”
“It has not come out yet, but when it does, you will see. I will produce the largest, most brilliant flower in this garden. Maybe in the whole neighborhood.”
“Well, that is nice,” the little plant replied. It did not want to be rude. “Then we can bloom together. I will make more yellow flowers down here, while you make your one large flower up there.”
“No.” The sunflower plant waved its leaves in dismissal. “You won’t be here then. As soon as the rains stop, the humans will come out. They will see you and pull you out.”
“Because you are a weed.”
“What is a weed?”
“It’s a plant that nobody wants. It’s a pest, a nuisance, so they pull it out and throw it away.”
“But I want to grow,” the little plant spoke plaintively. “My job is to grow and flower and make seeds. I don’t want to be thrown away.”
“Tell that to the humans. They say you are a weed.”
“Don’t I have a name?”
“Sure you do. It is oxalis. Some humans call you sour grass because your stem tastes sour. Children like to chew on you.”
“Oh well, then, the children like me. They won’t pull me up.”
“Maybe not, but their parents will. Or even worse, they’ll come with the sprayer and spray poison all over you. But I hope they don’t do that,” the sunflower added. “Because it might drift and get on my leaves too.” The large plant shook its leaves.
The little plant felt very sad. But it couldn’t do anything about it, so it just kept growing and producing flowers. It couldn’t help feeling sunny when it saw its bright yellow blossoms. It was the only spot of color in the garden.
One day, the sunflower, who was now very tall, spoke. “Here come the humans. Watch out!”
The oxalis plant looked but it couldn’t see anything. Its view was blocked by the bushes next to it. “Where?”
“Where is your flower?” the oxalis asked. “I thought you were going to make a big, beautiful flower.”
“It is not time yet.”
“But the humans would like to see it, I’m sure.”
“They’ll just have to wait,” the large plant said haughtily. “Beautiful flowers take time to produce. Not like your puny little yellow things.”
“I think they’re beautiful,” the oxalis thought to itself. But it didn’t say that aloud.
Now the humans came into sight. There were two big ones and one little one. The big ones stomped heavily. One carried a spray bottle and the other carried a hoe. The little human had a basket in her hand.
“Oh, look at all the pretty yellow flowers,” the little one said, bending down by the oxalis. “Can I pick one of the flowers?”
“You can pick them all, then I’ll dig up the plant,” the big human with the hoe said.
“But Mommy, it’s so pretty. I like it. Please don’t dig it up.”
“But it’s a weed.”
“What’s a weed?”
“A weed is a plant that we don’t want. A plant that is a nuisance.”
“But I want it,” the little girl said. “So it’s not a weed.” She bent down to the oxalis. “Please, little plant, may I have one flower? I’ll leave the rest so you can make seeds.”
Her mother groaned. “More seeds? Oh no, please!”
The little girl carefully picked one yellow flower and put it in her basket. But not before tasting the stem. “It’s sour,” she giggled.
“Yes, I liked to chew on the stems when I was your age,” her mother answered.
“Well then, you like it too. So it’s not a weed. And if it’s not a weed, you can’t dig it up.”
Her mother sighed. “Okay, okay. We let the little oxalis plant live.”
The little oxalis spread its flowers wide in excitement and happiness. Then it looked way up at the sunflower. The sunflower was drooping. The little girl had not noticed it, because it was so high above the girl and it didn’t have a flower.
“It’s okay,” the little oxalis encouraged it. “When you have produced your large brilliant flower, the humans will notice you. We can take turns. Right now, it’s my turn and later, it will be your turn.”
“You’re right, little oxalis,” the sunflower agreed. “I’m sorry I called you a weed. There’s room for both of us in this garden.”
And indeed, there was room for the sunflower and the oxalis, and for many other flowers that came later in the Spring. And the little girl loved them all.
America as a Weed
Fall in line and keep in step,
Patriotic and with pep.
We are right and they are wrong,
They are weak and we are strong.
What we want is what we get,
Fools are those who that forget.
Hussein was and is no more,
Taliban, too, is forgotten lore.
Iran now is in our sights,
Syria/Korea have no rights.
Who is next among our foes
As our empire eastward goes?
Time will pass and time will tell,
And in time we'll go to hell!
America's Gaudeamus Igitur
Buy now, buy more, buy more now!
Consume now, consume more, consume more now!
And let tomorrow take care of itself.
Liberty now, more liberty, more liberty now and for all!
Democracy now, more Democracy, more Democracy now and for all!
And no one will escape our imposing sweep.
America's credo knows no leash.
We will indulge but will we prevail?
More is Not Enough
America's hunger is insatiable,
Its thirst is quite unquenchable,
Its passions beyond bounds,
Its energy inexhaustible,
Its days by far too short!
Ever more and ever better
And in ever shorter time!
A spiralling vortex,
A dance of death!
An Epigram a Week by JM:
Paranoia is suspicion gone berserk.
Self-perpetuation is life's sole passion.
Life is struggle, fight and death.
Unfettered freedom is unfettered nonsense.
Píccola has her say:
1/16/2017 09:17:14 am
Oxalises lives matter! We'll pass on American weeds though, not so pretty a flower.
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