"A Dandelion for My Mother"

By Jean Nordhaus

How I loved those spiky suns,  
rooted stubborn as childhood  
in the grass, tough as the farmer’s  
big-headed children—the mats  
of yellow hair, the bowl-cut fringe.  
How sturdy they were and how  
slowly they turned themselves  
into galaxies, domes of ghost stars  
barely visible by day, pale  
cerebrums clinging to life  
on tough green stems.   Like you.  
Like you, in the end.   If you were here,  
I’d pluck this trembling globe to show  
how beautiful a thing can be  
a breath will tear away.