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Ode to a Bunch of Dandelions

It sticks up through the big crack
in our sidewalk, just suddenly
appearing the middle of last week
my favorite spring flower, and
not just because it's one of
the few I can identify

soon it multiplies and dozens
take over the lawn, unstoppable
cockroaches of the Plant Kingdom
even if I wanted to, the only
way to get rid of them is
to spray around enough chemicals
to poison the groundwater
for the next 18 centuries
so I just leave 'em be

this could be why the neighbors
with their meticulously cultivated
beds of tulips, violets, roses
buttercups, snapdragons, etc.
don't seem to like me very much

especially when
my prize dandelions' heads
turn to cotton balls and
the wind blows their tiny
paratrooper seeds up and
down the block, a full-scale
airborne invasion my boys
give no quarter to the
daffodils and other pansies

those few weeks
I'm the only one on the street
with such a beautiful lawn
and I spend no time at all
digging and scratching in the dirt

instead, I sit on my stoop in the sun
cold beer in hand, cigar in mouth
a ball game on the radio
and watch all the neighbors
get dirty and smelly
I raise my sweaty bottle
and drink their health.

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