#Poetry Friday–Mother’s Day & dandelions

bouquet of dandelions with bow-5-9-2019

Happy Poetry Friday and Happy Almost Mother’s Day!

I’m sharing  some small thoughts for Mom’s and nature…
Elizabeth Steinglass is hosting this weeks Poetry Friday Roundup at her blog ELIZABETH STEINGLASS Poetry for Children and their Grownups, thanks for hosting Liz! Liz has a debut picture book in verse on soccer that’s coming out soon, it’s called SOCCERVERSE POEMS ABOUT SOCCER. Stop by her blog for more poetry goodness and to check out her book!


Does anybody like you,  
you’re a flower too. 
Like a sun fallen from the sky 
skirted in dainty ray florets– 
Some cadmium yellow 
dance around your middle 
while others flash a hint of lime green.   
Your jaggedy leaves add an   
extra bonus on our salad fairs, 
and your light ruby red stems 
add an extra flair of savoir-faire. 
You’re perfect in each and every way, 
a neglected stepchild loaded with 
oodles of essential potential. 
I’ll only collect a few of you,   
a sister, brother, aunt, and uncle,
rap a ribbon round your center,    
and tie a tidy bow…  
My mother would be so pleased 
I didn’t take a tulip, daisy, or rose–   
But only you… You lonely, lovely one, 
darling dandelion for my  
Mother’s Day nosegay!

©2019 Michelle Kogan

I’ve been hunting around for another Mother’s Day poem to share, and on my journey I found this poem Summer at the Orphanage by Laure-Anne Bosselaar. The poem is from my book If Bees Are Few A Hive of Bee Poems. As I couldn’t find it online, to share the rest with you, you’ll have to make a trip to your local library or bookstore to savor the rest, or let your fingers do the walking…


by Laure-Anne Bosselaar

The bee dozes in a lily’s yellow throat. July sighs
over the convent’s garth where an old
linden blooms & bees hover
                low –– exhausted by the loads of pollen.

I’m only five, but exhausted too: I know longing’s
                      weight in my lungs & legs, so I 
shelter the bee there, in its buttery abundance,
               my shadow a dome over the bloom.

At dust, the chapel bells thorn the air. Swarms
        of uniforms flock toward that bronze authority.
I’m alone. The courtyard is empty
                             & large as absence suddenly –– silent
as my mother, dark as her back & black car as she drove away,
                                                flicking her ashes out the window.

Light dies. I fear the bee might get caught here ––
       in this nunnery, like me ––so I stroke its belly from
under the bloom’s throat & lazy, slow, it comes out
                golden as mother’s jewelry.


About Michelle Kogan Art, Illustration, & Writing

Michelle Kogan is an artist, illustrator, instructor, and writer, creating colorful allegorical figure, flora and fauna paintings and children's illustrations, which have a sensitivity to endangered species, and the environment. She is an art instructor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Evanston Art Center and offers Plein Air Painting Workshops at nature venues in the Chicago area including the Lincoln Park Conservatory, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, and Lurie Gardens at Millennium Park. Visit her online Etsy Shop at: http://www.MichelleKoganFineArt.etsy.com and her website: http://www.michellekogan.com
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28 Responses to #Poetry Friday–Mother’s Day & dandelions

  1. and your light ruby red stems
    add an extra flair of savoir-faire.
    Love those lines. My granddaughter believes dandelions are flowers, and they are in fact, her favorite flowers.

  2. lindabaie says:

    I took a picture of a beautiful one this week, and it too was “Like a sun fallen from the sky”, Michelle. Your poem is a wonderful celebration of them. They are bee’s first food, so I leave them until other flowers bloom. The 2nd poem, oh my, holds such sadness inside that young one. Happy Mother’s Day to you, hoping it’s a wonderful one for you.

  3. Linda KulpTrout says:

    Your poem is a lovely tribute, and your art is always amazing!

  4. jama says:

    Love your dandelion poem and watercolor. You’ve elevated the lonely, lovely one to its rightful status. Didn’t Emily Dickinson also like dandelions? 🙂

  5. Oh yes, such sweet memories making dandelion bouquets for Mom. Not sure she was terribly fond of the sticky “milk” or the ants that caught a ride, but that’s the price of parenting, no? 😉 When we lived in Australia, it was fallen Frangipani blooms that my children gave me. We’d always have a few floating in a bowl. ❤

  6. Rebecca Herzog says:

    I love your dandelion poem! they are my absolute favorite flower. But we don’t get too many of them here in Florida. I always told my husband that if we lived somewhere else, I’d never spray them so that one day I’d have a whole yard of dandelions!

  7. What memories your poem brings back – I’d always make a bouquet for mom with whatever flowers were available, usually dandelions and Indian paintbrush. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Kay Mcgriff says:

    I love dandelions in all their glory! Your poem is a lovely tribute to them.

  9. cweichel says:

    I am always happy to see dandelions because they are food for bees before everything else is in bloom. Ours are now puff balls, but every bit of their season is pure delight. My 23 month old granddaughter is having quite the time trying to blow on them.

  10. cvarsalona says:

    Michelle, I like the way you cradled and crafted simple dandelions into a bouquet drawing and poem. These lines are so sweet and so right for mindful classrooms where every child is a creation of beauty: You’re perfect in each and every way,
    a neglected stepchild loaded with
    oodles of essential potential. Love the illustration and am rereading the last poem because of its sadness (I fear the bee might get caught here –– in this nunnery, like me) but tenderl (it comes out/golden as mother’s jewelry). Remembering my mother with all that you wrote.

  11. Liz Steinglass says:

    My sister was just telling me that there’s a movement to stop trying to rid our lawns of dandelions. I gave up on that years ago. They’re magic–so bright and yellow (a sun fallen from the sky!) and then so appealing to blow. Sumer at the Orphanage crushed me with the phrase “only five, but exhausted.”

  12. mbhmaine says:

    Dandelion bouquets bring back such memories–of my childhood and my children’s. I especially like these lines: “Like a sun fallen from the sky
    skirted in dainty ray florets–”
    Through the years, I’ve become quite a fan of dandelions and all their stages. The second poem is so tender and painful. I will make myself a note to try to find the rest to read it. The language is lovely, and that third stanza really packs a wallop!

  13. Your dandelion bouquet resembles the ones my Kindergarten sweeties often present me with at the end of recess. Sadly, once picked, they don’t hold up well, even in water. Love this buzzing poem, Michelle. The bees are super active in my yard these days, which I am thrilled about. Cheers! — Christie

  14. maryleehahn says:

    I lovelovelove your dandelion bouquet! I gave many of those to Mom, back in the day!

  15. laurashovan222 says:

    Wow — what an opening line in “Summer at the Orphanage.” It pulled me right in!

    And I loved the visual images in your poem, Michelle, especially:
    skirted in dainty ray florets–
    Some cadmium yellow
    dance around your middle

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