The Pink Bugleweed

The Pink Bugleweed
by Theodora Goss

Such an intricate
construction, like the tower
of Babylon, reaching
to the sky, only about three
inches high, rising
from a glabrous rosette
of leaves, its flowers pink
and elegant, a ballet
dancer of a plant.

Why exactly
are you called a weed,
with your delicate bugles,
summoning the butterflies
and bees, which arrive
like courtiers, worshiping
your beauty? You remind me
of Madame de la Pompadour
in a portrait by Boucher,
a fine lady indeed.

I pity anyone
who doesn’t kneel to examine
the darker pink streaks
on your petals, scalloped
like the sleeves
of a couture gown, suitable
for the country or the town,
or listen for whatever
inaudible tune you are blowing.

I should curtsy
to you, Ajuga reptans. You spread
such a rich carpet, wherever
you are growing.

(The image is a botanical illustration of Ajuga reptans.)

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