Sunday, May 9, 2010

Bloomed-Out Poppy

Several years ago, I planted three poppies in my front garden. Each spring, they would send up sturdy stems topped with fuzzy green buds. Great big bright-orange blossoms burst from each bud, ruffly and flamboyant, like upside-down party dresses. What a show! Then one year I dug too close around the roots of the poppies. The poppies took offense and did not return the following spring. Two years ago, two of them reappeared. I guess they forgave me. We are in the midst of their annual show. This morning, I looked closely at a poppy whose petals had just dropped. Here it is, surrounded by a tutu of delicate stamens, which will be gone within hours. Look at the oddly curving stem----no wonder the artists of the Art Nouveau era loved this flower. In a week, I'll be left with only the seed cases. They always make me think of Marines---hair on top, shaved clean on the sides. Some day I'll glue googly eyes to all of the seed cases in the garden and we’ll have a different kind of poppy show