Not rose or lily—lovely as they are—
but irrepressible forsythia
should be the quintessential Easter flower.
Rampant yellow, it basks against blue skies,
but leaps, exulting, on rainy days.
It clashes with your pastel dress.
Unruly, its branches arc from earth to heaven.
The cross-shaped flower shouts Alleluia,
heralding the green leaf,
hissing at death
with the force of its whispered name:
Jennifer Davis Michael is Professor and Chair of English at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Mezzo Cammin, Southern Poetry Review, Literary Mama, Switchgrass Review, and Cumberland River Review.