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How Unlike the Wildflowers

Updated on September 10, 2011

Imitating intimacy of bees

Executing eugenics of species

We breed for color, shape, voluptuousness 

Using our arts and our sciences 

To force them to bloom under false pretenses 

In deceptively manufactured climates 

Deem stems worthy or unworthy 

Gifts to express emotion perfectly

Strip them of their thorns, peel away their petals 

Pull off their leaves to finalize their suitability 

As gifts to express our deepest emotions 

Or help conceal our most shameful lies 

Disembodied and imprisoned

For our enjoyment as they slowly wilt  

We place what we think of as perfection 

In a vase on our dining room table to die as we watch 

Denied their Purpose 

Perfection conceived, delicate petals 

Bloomed into the world to define beauty 

We redefine in our own mortal image 

Bred to fulfill others’ expectations 

Petal, thorn, root and leaf of being 

Taken by institutionalized shame  

Raised in hothouses where we are forced 

To bloom in only the conventional way 

By our appearance judged fit or unfit 

For the imprisonment of lifelong display 

How unlike the wildflowers that live freely 

Rioting in joyous fields of color 

None the worse for managing to remain 

Untouched by our improvement 


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    • Eiddwen profile image


      7 years ago from Wales

      Great poem and thanks for sharing.

      Take care and have a great day.


    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      7 years ago from Canada

      Followed here from your rain poem, the audio cloud is super! This poem touches home to me, having worked for years as a florist, but also as a landscape gardener, these thoughts you express I have dwelled on myself over and over again, nicely done, congratulations. Regards, snakeslane

    • Tom Rubenoff profile imageAUTHOR

      Tom rubenoff 

      7 years ago from United States

      Thanks so much, Eiddwen and Dallas. "Balance." Yes. All things in moderation, perhaps?

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 

      7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Perhaps we too are "wild flowers." We force our children into doing the "right thing." To color within the lines.. To color the bark on trees brown, not purple... Flag up and awesome!

      Perhaps we need to "balance" our needs and our children's needs. We must authentic ourselves and be the best of our potential. Not the best of some else's potential, needs, or wnats. If our children can be who they are would be a new beginnings of less "anxieties," concerns and streesed children... We could "smell the flowers" and enjoy the process of life as it is meant to be.. Not forced, not pre-determined, just a process...

    • Eiddwen profile image


      7 years ago from Wales

      A beautiful hub which I read with pleasure.

      Thanks for sharing this gem with us.

      Here's to many more to share on here.

      Take care


    • Tom Rubenoff profile imageAUTHOR

      Tom rubenoff 

      7 years ago from United States

      Thank you!

    • QudsiaP1 profile image


      7 years ago

      Beautiful absolutely mesmerising.

    • Tom Rubenoff profile imageAUTHOR

      Tom rubenoff 

      7 years ago from United States

      Thank you! I used to love to plant trees, watch them grow from a few inches tall to multiples of my height. They have stages of life, even a kind of slow personality if you take the time to get to know them.

    • Truckstop Sally profile image

      Truckstop Sally 

      7 years ago

      Enjoyed the audio! Very cool! I am a big fan of gifting with live plants (with or without flowers).

    • Tom Rubenoff profile imageAUTHOR

      Tom rubenoff 

      7 years ago from United States

      I have lived to hear that a piece of my work reminds someone of Thoreau. This is a great gift, thank you, Rebekah. I will reread that essay :)

    • rebekahELLE profile image


      7 years ago from Tampa Bay

      To be that wildflower.. reminds me somewhat of the essay about Apples written by Thoreau I read this afternoon. He compares the wild apple trees and how they grow in comparison to those cultivated. Love the soundcloud, very nice addition.

    • Tom Rubenoff profile imageAUTHOR

      Tom rubenoff 

      7 years ago from United States

      Yes, I did notice! And I miss that, too.

    • Randy Behavior profile image

      Randy Behavior 

      7 years ago from Near the Ocean

      Ever notice how flowers bred for larger brighter blooms and straighter stems lose their fragrance in the process?

    • juneaukid profile image

      Richard Francis Fleck 

      7 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      A richly poetic and ironic commentary on human nature!

    • Tom Rubenoff profile imageAUTHOR

      Tom rubenoff 

      7 years ago from United States

      Thank you. :)

    • moneycop profile image


      7 years ago from JABALPUR

      very true........

    • RTalloni profile image


      7 years ago from the short journey

      Wildflowers know an eternal secret. :)


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