I learned about love
pulling rays from dandelions
their tiny hair-like shafts
like some flowering porcupine
good for at least ten minutes
of suspense when precision
was important so as not to
taint the outcome prolong
discovering the inevitable

Fingers yellowing with nature’s
nicotine and my knees glittering
with almost microscopic petals
I kept plucking but my mind
wandered to pin feathers
on scrawny white leghorns
being readied for the stewpot
after flopping around the yard

Even as I mouthed the mantra
until finally giving in to futility
and tossing the wilting remnants
into the gutter thinking to try
a fat pink peony or maybe a tulip
but the one had too many petals
for a quick answer and the later
too few to be trusted with the truth

leaving me to wonder
were answers even to be trusted
if I learned about love from such
dubious daisy substitutes.