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  • Kerry D. Krauss

Goldenrod

I have observed through the summer the coming and going of flowering, leafing things on Hill Rd. Like fireworks, they shoot upward, bloom, and fade only for another to follow the same cycle. I should have paid more attention. Their arrival and departure marked some stage in the journey through summer to which I was oblivious.

One day when I am not doing the trigonometric formulae required to deem 28 active COVID cases in the county ‘safe’ and 29 active COVID cases in the county ‘unsafe’, I will pay attention. (By the way, I flunked Trigonometry spectacularly my senior year of high school, but that’s a story for another day.) I suspect, as Scripture says, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die” or was that The Byrds?

Either way, this is the season for goldenrod. Goldenrod is the perfect name for the paper which is the color of…well, goldenrod. It is a late summer blooming plant in the aster family. We consider this a weed. Bees consider this their last great chance to make sweet, sweet honey.

I doubt the goldenrod will last long. They seem fragile, fleeting things. They have their season. They shoot skyward. They bloom. To be sure, they will fade with the fading summer sun.

But they give life. They give sustenance. They give a late, dewy nectar to the fragile, vulnerable life desperate to find enough for winter. In the haste of the fading summer sun, comes a burst of golden, life-affirming, life-giving potential.

On Monday I was so aware of unrealized potential, today I see the realized potential shooting skyward and blooming. I will not despair the fading summer sun. I will not despair the fragile, fleeting goldenrod. I will not despair the changing seasons.

To everything (turn, turn, turn), there is a season (turn, turn, turn), and a time to every purpose, under heaven.

To the families that hurt, I love you.

To the communities that band together, I need you.

To the human family, I hope for you.

Please be safe.

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