by Jane St. Clair
Someday I will have a field of sunflowers.
I’d let people in there, but only those who love sunflowers. They’d definitely have to be sunflower people.
Maybe we’d draw their big happy faces pointed to the sun — big happy faces of ridiculous sunflowers on their gigantic stalks with their humongous roly-poly heads, awkward like people from some other planet, toddling and teetering like babies with heads too big for their bodies —
— but sunflower people like us understand them.
We’d watch our field of sunflowers, we’d watch the way the wind bends them down and the way they move in unison sometimes, sometimes not. The way their bright yellow is perfect against a turquoise sky!
The way they appear to be smiling just at you!
We won’t think about water or soil or seeds or any such thing. We would just have sunflowers.
We would never put them in a vase because they are too big and they belong in a sunflower field after all. They are too big and electric with light and sun to go into a vase. Van Gogh knew that, which is why he got crazy-high drawing a simple vase full of simple sunflowers. He knew the power of sunflowers, yes indeed he did.
If you walk through a field of sunflowers, you can get drunk and slant without drinking anything at all!
The sight of them –with their wild colors and crazy shape and the way they sway and dance in the sun– makes you, as Emily Dickinson wrote, “reel through an endless summer day.” And you just reel away — tipsy slant! You’ve tasted her liquor never brewed, you debauchee of sunflowers, you!