The Loveliest Flower of Easter

Easter is flowers—
Usually daffodils, their golden trumpets
Bravely announcing spring;
Tulips sometimes,
Rainbows on stems;
Always lilies, looking like angels
In their waxen-white perfection;
Even violets, perhaps,
If you walk out in the woods.
But the loveliest flower of Easter,
Is it not our faith
That life will never end,
That though we die,
We will bloom again?

“Like the Garden of the Lord” (Isa. 51:3)

There is something holy
about the desert in spring.
The prophecy of last year’s seeds
is fulfilled in a measure of color
dazzling as revelation.
Saguaro raise their arms to heaven
and receive blessings
of white blossoms.
Gold fire burns brittlebush;
lupine spreads lavender peace
on thorny hillsides,
and in an atonement of red,
extending like a prayer
on the tips of ocotillo,
tracing the veins of phlox,
staining the desert floor
with clusters of scarlet bugler,
I find, despite the hard judgment
of stone and sun, mercy
and a promise of resurrection.

[photos] Background: Photo by Kent Miles; Inset: Photo © Tony Stone Images/Gary Braasch