Drawing by Gonçalo Neto
Head of a dandelion
In a world full of deep darkness, dandelions are a sign of God, equal to the flight of birds. But nobody loves the head of a dandelion. Their presence, constant and persistent, breeds contempt; their absence, a sign of folly shrouded in control.
It is difficult to discern with thirsty eyes and an indulgent mind something burning with such bright fervour, pacified only by scratching haughtily at the root of the burns sprouting so soon. A ball of light, blossoming at the joining of intelligent structures, at the base of telephone poles, waste pipes, and between the slabs in the corner workings of the mind.
So why pluck their sunny heads as remnants for the wayside? To gather up the jagged leaves? For a soup to soothe the body? For wine, to mute the mind? It was for such a light that Icarus yielded the back of a wind, bird-like, gliding up for a grasp at the sun. Do we now reclaim his pursuit of God by rejecting this incarnation of the sun?
But, pride is a disconcerting anchor that will not hold the body from sways under the burden of an anthropogenic mind - intellect producing dense thought, stretching cold and metallic around the head, reaching down the spine, gathering at the knees for a fall to anxiety. In the waves of awareness, of the body, its relationship to the soul and connection to the spirit, strong ties to self, nature, and mind will not hold, for anchors too are double-edged.
The feet slap with self-pity as weighty soles hit the ground, wandering off to bed up a long thought trail. And here It sprouts again, between the joining of two pavement branches, luminous, burning back the black shadows. Its amber holds with steady breathing because obedience guards the flame that warms the heart; it gives peace talking to it. The body shivers, enduring the purifying fire. Yet, will is the recognition of hope - the hope of salvation - predicated on a simple truth: fire gives light, though it burns.
In time, the glow is enough to cocoon a heated space in the bed. In this inch, there is enough to peaceably row, row, row your boat, down saline streams of salvation.
Beware but not weary, toneless voices will blow winds in the shadows, casting tasteless hands forward, riding to touch the seed, grabbing at the itch of a kindling fire, the root of the blooming light. Nevertheless, elevate, for it is out of darkness light comes. Levitate - out of darkness will come the light. Not looking for a beyond or green pastures, where God is rationalised to be, but reckoning the grey pastures of a daily route, recognising all the more that the dandelions in sight are a light to hold, akin to grace.
Text by Fikayo Oloruntoba