Daffodils All the Way Down

Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg

It’s that tender green just starting
to tell its tale leaf to hand to night
sky to too much rain to hold the light.
It’s the bud of the bud still a ghost
of what will burst its old story to paper
and take over the long curve on the road
you think you’re driving for the first time
but you’ve just forgotten what spring is.

It’s forgetting then, the frigid mind erasing
itself with hopes of loveliness and ease
that look like a Monet painting come to life.
Or it’s the small motor lodge on Rt. 66
where you finally decided not to be your father’s
notion after all. It’s all those movie endings
that dissolve us into bundles of daffodils.

It’s winter in the rearview mirror
with full heat overtaking the electric bill.
It’s also the long walk around the corner
or to the ledge of the highest roof, looking down
into the tumble of overgrowth and noxious weeds,
and later, driving in the county, it’s the place
of the old homestead gone, yet dozens of bulbs
planted by someone decades ago, feverish
and exhilarated at the arc of one daring act,
explode on the slope all the way down

Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Ph.D., the 2009-13Kansas Poet Laureate is the author of 24 books, including How Time Moves: New & Selected Poems; Miriam’s Well, a novel; Needle in the Bone, a non-fiction book on the Holocaust; The Sky Begins At Your Feet: A Memoir on Cancer, Community, and Coming Home to the Body. Founder of Transformative Language Arts, she leads writing workshops widely, coaches people on writing and right livelihood, and consults on creativity. Her new podcast is Tell Me Your Truest Story. Find out more about her at CarynMirriamGoldberg.com, YourRightLivelihood.com, and Bravevoice.com.

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