Gone

 

Civilization swings
one extreme to the other.
You try in vain to understand it all.

A silenced moon hangs low, red,
angry,
and you are on the other side
walking a tightrope of a dream.

Hasn’t anyone told you
that you are gone?

You know I care about you,
you said.

That night I dreamt of sunflowers,
Schweinitz’s, the kind
you don’t see much anymore.

Fingertips pulling at my hair from behind
remind me that
Somewhere beyond my quiet porch,
bent around corners I no longer see,
the rain is whispering your name.

Hasn’t anyone told you
that I am sitting here?

I smile,
because sunflowers are beautiful,
even if I can’t see them.

 

Christina Ward
8/22/06

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Author’s Note: Schweinitz’s Sunflower is endemic to my region of the world. This precious flower species (pictured above) is a member of the Asteraecae family and has been on the federal endangered species list since 1991. (Gale 2000)

 

“Distribution

Schweinitz’s sunflower is endemic to the piedmont of the Carolinas, where it is currently known from 10 populations in North Carolina and six in South Carolina. The North Carolina populations are located in Union, Stanly, Cabarrus, Mecklenberg, and Rowan Counties. The species has been extirpated from Stokes and Montgomery Counties in North Carolina. All the extant and historic sites for the species in South Carolina are in York County. Thirty-eight percent of the historically extant populations have been destroyed. Most of the remaining populations are small, with four of them containing less than 40 individuals each.” (Siler, R.)

 

REFERENCES:

The Gale Group Inc. (2000). Schweinitz’s Sunflower. Beacham’s Guide to the Endangered Species of North America. Retrieved from https://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/science-magazines/schweinitzs-sunflower

Siler, Robert. Schweinitz’s Sunflower – Helianthus schweinitzii . Retrieved from http://www.scwf.org/schweinitzs-sunflower