Dandelions

April 1, 2007
Richard M. Berlin, MD

Dandelions

The landscape is early June,
all lilac and dandelion, foxglove
and rose. Friends ask about dance
in Shanghai, and my daughter
tells them she will be the only
foreigner in a cast of five hundred.
She places her hand in the small
of my back to make me stand tall,
and she bows like a ballerina
at curtain call to pick a dandelion
gone to seed, a gray sphere
the color of my summer beard.
And with one quick breath
brief as twenty years, she sends
a thousand possibilities into the wind,
the empty stalk in her hand
bleeding milk from the broken end,
the head shaped like a perfect star.