In the scheme of things, what’s a little clover, right? Apparently, to some, it is a huge thing. A disturbing thing. A downright thorn in your side kind of thing. Not easily tolerated. Now personally, I like clover. Always have. I like the way it sounds and feels when you say it. I like the way it looks in the grass. Cest tragic. The horror. “Clover is not good”, people cry. As my mother says, ” What do I know? Nothing, I guess.” I feel her pain. “That’s sarcasm, Gram,” my little granddaughter tells me. “Yes, chicken,” I reply, “It sure is.” Back to clover….
I loved the Natalie Wood movie, Inside Daisy Clover, about a young woman struggling with life and driven out of her mind to an insane asylum. I digress. But her name is so cool and yet so troublesome to some. Daisy Clover, a combo of a simple flower or maybe a weed and that damn clover, intrusive pest, ruining the lawn. Go know.
I am a lover of weeds. Since a young girl, I picked wild flowers that were probably weeds, on the side of the street in Brooklyn, and presented the bouquet to my mother. She graciously took the gift and complimented my choice of tall violet puffs contrasting with buttery yellow petals. I was pleased she was happy. My mother, Miss Green Thumb, grew prize roses, with names like Hawaiian Sunset and Chantilly Cream. But she appreciated the gesture of a well picked bunch of weeds, and chose her favorite small milk glass pitcher to display them proudly on the kitchen table. My mother would not flinch at clover. She’s a country girl from Vermont. Clover we know, has its place. Who are we to say it doesn’t?
And then there’s nutsedge. What can you really say about nutsedge? I had never heard of this other apparently annoying to some, weed. Again, I like the sound of this too. It’s quite frankly, adorable. Nutsedge. If I had my druthers, I’d name my new dwelling, Nutsedge. It suggests another meaning, one might say, Nuts Edge. Cute, huh? My husband would have nightmares, I fear. He works in landscaping. People tell him to rid them of the plague of nutsedge and clover. They do not see its beauty nor its purpose. Perhaps it is strangling their lawn. Oh my! Furthermore, it could very well be disturbing their peace of mind. “Be gone,” they shout at the nutsedge and clover. “It is defiant and invasive,” they say.
Alas, they would not understand my love of either weed. They would think me mad. I think they are not seeing the big picture. Like when you draw a rough childlike drawing with green sticks of grass and a primitive sun and maybe a simple four leaf clover. The taller sticks of grass are the nutsedge, I am told. I never knew that. The clover is that blanket of little green Fleur de lis shaped leaves with small cotton colored flowers. Bad. “Go away, clover!” the people cry. They don’t remember drawing the puffy flowers in their childhood, I can only assume. Or maybe they did perfect reproductions of royal gardens or Monet paintings. That’s nice. I could be jealous, as drawing is not my forte. I could write a poem instead.
Ode to Nutsedge and Clover:
Oh green stalks that stand up to be noticed, why do you taunt me?
Oh clover all over, why are you such a nuisance?
I wanted perfection. I need some direction.
Shall I be satisfied with weeds?
Where can this possibly lead?
I give up and go swimming.
But then, you are winning.
Oh Nutsedge, oh clover…. When will you be over?
In winter, I won’t care. But then you won’t be there.
I’ll miss you, I lie. I’ll have nothing to complain about, I cry.
One man’s dirt is another man’s treasure. No, that’s not right. One woman’s weed is another woman’s mead. One cannot walk in the other one’s shoes. Perhaps one ought to try.