Wednesday, August 18, 2010



Why did it take me
          so many years
                    to know

that it is the milkweed,
          before it bursts
                    with sticky fluid,

          before it pops
                    its silky pods
                    of fluff,

that fills the nights
          with heady,
                    heavy Heaven?


  1. as the hungarian says sometimes it is 'right in front of our eyes', but we just can not acknowledge the beauty/the usefulness of it.

    also, milkweed makes a strange, beautiful decoration in early winter.

  2. isn't it wonderful when we stumble upon such great finds? hope all is well.

  3. Beautiful, beautiful. "Heady, heavy heaven" is such an awesome phrase. I love the idea of heavy heaven. The poem as a question is also fantastic. Why does it take us so many years to make some of the best (and simplest) discoveries? I enjoyed this one very much, sis!

  4. ditto julie on the three h's. it was a nice ending.

  5. i love this kind of poem - that at first, it is really about milkweed, and then again, maybe it is not really about milkweed at all. i love the mix of fancy, regret, and appreciation, and like julie, i love that it's formed in a question.

    i'll be reading this one for a while.

  6. Ahh!It's beautiful!
    I liked the bursty-poppy milkyweed...
    ...such heaven on Earth..:)

  7. I'm glad you discovered. :)

    I've said it before, I'll say it again. No one can touch you when it comes to nature poetry. You draw inspiration from such unique places and leave the reader thinking. You're awesome!

  8. "In Hindu mythology, relatives of the common milkweed were considered to be the king of plants; it was believed that the creating god was under the influence of milkweed juice when he created the universe."

    Now that explains a lot doesn't it?

  9. I like that alot - and it's so true sometimes we just don't see things. I'm discovering a lot about nature this year, just from having to walk every day with a dog, seasonal things in the grass of the suburbs that I never knew had such particular timings.

  10. SzelsoFa - That's a great saying. We say something is "right in front of our nose(es)."

    I love the pods especially. They are beautiful and strange.

    Naquillity - It is, indeed! Thanks.

    Julie - Exactly, exactly! Why are we so blind for so long? :-)

    Jack - Thanks. Heavy heaven. Have you ever smelled the milkweed? It is truly heady, heavy, and heavenly!

    joaquin - You always nail it. :-)

    Erratic thoughts - Thank you. Aren't they gorgeous?

  11. TFE - Right, right, right! But the question remains: why did it take me so long???

    Aniket - You are so sweet! You always leave me smiling! Thank you.

    TWM - Well, that I didn't know, but it explains everything! Have you ever smelled it, Mark? On one of your camping trips, maybe?

    Niamh - For many years I forgot to go outside and really notice the world. I got caught up in my work and family and forgot how very much a part of me I was neglecting. I've found myself so much happier now that I've found that essential part again. Go for your walks! Dogs are wonderful excuses for being in the world!

  12. Karen - I am reminded here, so much, of the Victorian poets who had to tip-toe around delicate subjects...disguising their erotic thoughts in the poetry of flowers.....

    Stirring on both fronts!

  13. Wonderful bit of Imagism... I like how you framed it in terms of finding this out just now. There are so many things of nature that are useful and/or beautiful which we should know growing up. Maybe if we had poems like this to teach us, we'd all be a little more in touch with the world. :)

  14. Hmmm - I feel the same way about your poetry that you do about milkweed here. A piece of heaven!

  15. Cagey - Glad you liked it!

    Joseph - Sometimes it takes a while to figure things out. Sometimes too long!

    Jana - Thank you. That is such a sweet thing to say, especially coming from one who teaches poetry.

  16. I wonder if the beautiful, fragrant mystery is diminished.

    I do like milkweeds, though. Especially the fish that live inside. :)

  17. This is so lovely with its element of discovery, Karen. From childhood memories, I remember seeing milkweed, but your poem has me thinking about the fragrance now.

  18. I'll have to seek it out and smell it now.

  19. Ah, I too did not know of the milkweed until you made it apparent. Simply good!

  20. It took me far longer - if that's any consolation.
    Your poem is heady enough to do it justice.

  21. Hey, Karen! Just a reminder that the poetry bus keys are yours this week.Yip, you is driving the bus! :)

  22. Jason - Now you have me wondering. The fish? I'll have to check that one out!

    Jeanne Iris - I honestly spent years here thinking that the wonderful scent that seemed to be here only on humid summer nights was some sort of wild lilac that I couldn't find. It never occurred to me that the milkweed that I allowed to grow along the fence for its lovely pods would have such a sultry scent. It does; believe me!

    Dominic - See my comment to Jeanne (above). I hope you find it!

    Quackster - I hope you can find it.

    Dave - You've made me smile!

    TFE - Lordy, boy! Are we in a hurry? The bus is full of gas. Oh, that's someone else in the room! :-)