Peonies

IMG-2444What is it with you peonies?
Don’t you realize how ridiculous you are?
How is it that you’ve managed to survive,
to evolve as you have,
with your ostentatious plumage,
the impossible number of petals,
greedily packed in your buds,
then burst out in crowded layer upon layer,
mature blossoms so large and heavy,
your stems unable to hold you upright,
like an obese person with an eating disorder?

Peonies, why not dial it down a little?
Must you show off so?
Why not exhibit a modicum of humility?
Are you really that insecure?
Consider the modest daisy.
Observe the understated tulip.
The dahlia can be large enough
to cover a dinner plate,
without succumbing to gravity.
Even the rose shows some restraint!

You are, on the surface,
intrinsically beautiful, peonies.
I can’t take that away from you.
But, think of the big picture.
Pruning shears must inflict their fatal wound
for you to remain vertical and at your prettiest,
in a vase on a table.
Otherwise,
drooping in the garden
from the weight of your excess,
well, it’s sad, really.
And no one wants to be sad,
from looking at flowers.

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