Milkweed Season

Walking through a field on my way to the post office, I find tasseled milkweed seeds, strewn across the trampled grass.

When she was a toddler in a hand-me-down stroller, my now 13-year-old loved to pick apart milkweed pods and let the seeds drift from her tiny fingers.

I doubt she’d remember those windy autumn days, this child who was always so quiet. But I’d like to think, deep inside her, those hours worked their magic, as she watched those seeds rise into the breeze and disappear.

….Two days ago I walked
the empty woods, bent over,
crunching through oak leaves,
asking myself questions
without answers. From somewhere
a froth of seeds drifted by touched
with gold in the last light
of a lost day, going with
the wind as they always did.

— Philip Levine, “Milkweed”


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