From the Leaves of the Night Notebook

This entry is part 64 of 92 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Spring 2011


On the common fleabane, the leaves
clasp their stems and the spiraled
white lashes close on their one
yellow eye for the night. What
does it see, peeking through
the fringed curtains?


In his Flora Suecia, Carl Linnaeus
wrote of a Russian soldier
cured of dysentery by fleabane
decoction. Burn the plant,
hoary head and all, and be rid
of fleas, insects, and other itches.


The night-blooming cereus
spreads its ivory skirts to reveal
its corded saffron petticoat.
For a few hours of such
intense fragrance, what
would you not unravel?


Legends describe a soup
prepared from entire flowers,
and fed to warriors and lovers
with thinning breath. In other tales,
the flowers are called Job’s Tears.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

Series Navigation← Landscape, with Wind and Tulip TreeLetter to What Must be Borne →


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