NDJ:8 “Wild Orchid Dance” by Andrea Northwood

Surely the Divine
saved its most ecstatic dance
for the wild orchids
of the North Woods.

Is there a better way
to reach for the heavens
than the blazing pink petals
of the Dragon’s Mouth,
standing so erect
like an alert animal’s ears
they are plainly straining
to take in more of God’s music?

Is there a more elegant evening gown
than that of the Yellow Lady Slipper,
her dorsal sepal so stately arched
over a large yellow lip exuding luxury,
long sleek dark purple open arms
snaking into many twists
and turns?

Show me a happier face
than the outsized smiles
and laughing tongues
of the Fairy Slipper
(complete with neon-lemon furry beard),
or the Spotted Coralroot,
its snowy white column
speckled with magenta polka dots
surrounded by all shades of the sun,
each stem a party
of 20-50 little hoodlum flowers!

And what host could find more festive décor
than the red-and-yellow streaked stars
of the Striped Coralroot,
or the voluptuous pink scoop of Tuberous Grass-Pink,
or the majestic pink-white-green ornaments
of Showy Lady Slippers, or the Gay Orchid
display of spade-shaped waves of white
underneath hoods of lavender?

Their beauty is so outrageous
God must have been uproariously drunk
on joy and celebration
in their making!

Of course to see them
you must discover them,
for like all that remains truly wild
they cannot be cultivated.
They require absolute freedom
to grow, another mark
of God’s brilliant stamp.

Think about it:
everyone is invited!
You too could come upon them
in a cathedral of pine
or a lowly roadside ditch,
or some backwater bog.
Don’t overlook any of it.

Come find your exuberance again
in this fantastic fairy woodland
and dance with us in full color!

Come throw yourself open to the sky;
find what’s salubrious for your soul,
and let wild orchids lead the dance!