Inspired by a family connection to a recent news/Internet story.
The Ghost Orchid
Rare ghost orchid found in Florida
In a preserve we visited as children
Running sneakers on the boardwalk
So noisy we’ll scare everything away.
Luckily our noise did not bother the plants.
Just look at the roots, experts say
It’s been there for years as we grew
From children to adolescents to adults
Then bringing our own rambunctious children
To walk the planks but still no one saw the ghost.
Hidden behind sheltering green cypress branches
It bloomed each summer for two brief weeks
Beauty unappreciated, unseen, unbeholden
With nine blossoms -- three times normal --
Corkscrew Swamp’s overachieving orchid.
But a hurricane whipped by global warming
Tore the screening branches away to reveal
The rare blossoms to be cherished, prized
Like time has torn away the everyday
Making treasures of family memories.