Best told, it was a kind of jig that required
fast footwork to keep up with their continuous
dance and fast pop-ups, their unholy heartiness
that was no match for the lawn that had been
vociferously pleading for me to step in to avert
an impending disqualification in the race to gain
the trophy for the greenest lawn in town.
Let it be known that I, like some modern-day
Don Quixote, charged into that dance with
a dandelion extractor in my right hand and
hand-scoops of topsoil in my left in a fit of
extracting and patching as I went forward with
intermittent swivels to one side or the other as soon
as my peripheral vision caught sight of the
lineup of dandelion partners who silently
waited there like patient wallflowers with their
gleaming bright yellow faces in the late morning sun.
Little did I think before my dance with the dandelions
that they could wear me out, but 505 of them did by the time
that my lawn dance was completed. When I headed inside
for some cool water and a bite to eat, my mind was flooded
with thoughts of utility and its nemesis, futility— much as
poor old Quixote did his circular bidding with reality. In line with
eventual capitulation, I'm starting to think that the
yellowy loveliness of dandelions does really serve to
have an ornamental effect on my yard after all,
and, in the event that that I should change my mind,
a nice dandelion salad or dandelion wine might not
be unrealistic alternatives after all.
From Navigating in the Sun (forthcoming from Finishing Line Press).
Used here with the author’s permission.