“After Blueflags” by Elsa Johnson

by Elsa Johnson

After Blueflags

(Homage to WCW)

We stopped to gather pods

from the milkweed plants

where they grow

in the meadow

amid tall grasses

that wave

as wind blows

and rain falls

and runnels the ground

toward the swale

where we planted blueflags

one spring

in water

with sunflowers beside.

The milkweed pods

are like fat fish

which we pull

from stalks

and carry

in our pockets

and our arms

to the ditch

where our hands grow sticky

with white sap

as we pull apart pods

for the seeds inside

lined up like fish scales

tied to silk threads

which we rend and scatter

so they drift

in wet air

Milkweed pods
Milkweed pods