Sunday, 11 July 2021


by Marguerite Guzmán Bouvard

In late May what swirls around us
in unprecedented numbers is pollen 
flying through the air, the signs

of new life, and new beginnings
in a time when the Israelis
and Palestinians are killing each

other during a celebration at the end
of Ramadan in a mosque, or in a settlement,
and in neighborhoods where they once

lived together, and can no longer
do so, when they have lost their
way, and the meaning of the words

that guide us through our lives.
Pollen can fit in our hands yet contains
a universe of happenings; the male

microgametophytes produce sperm cells
to female reproductive pistils. When placed
on a stigma of a flowering plant

a pollen grain creates a tube which grows
down the tissue to the ovary, a familiar
pairing which is about families

that bond without borders. This is the time
of wildflowers when we should be
admiring their different colors,

and listening to each other, sharing our
stories and our grief, when we need to
learn that killing does not solve problems.

* * * * *

Marguerite Guzmán Bouvard is the author of 11 poetry books, two of which have won awards including the MassBook Award for Poetry. She has also written a number of non-fiction books on women's rights, human rights, social justice, grief, and has just finished one, Healthcare Workers on the Frontline of the Pandemic. Her latest poetry book, The Cosmos of the Heart, came out last fall.

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