Awhile ago I asked for recommendations for grade school books for read aloud time with my children. I’m currently working through the list. My friend Julie said that her children had enjoyed the Dandelion Fire series by N.D. Wilson. We are currently on book three. We might take a break after this one as the books are meant for a slightly older audience. But they are good!
I have to tell you about one of the themes.
The author describes the strength of a dandelion as being in its ubiquity, in its ability to grow nearly anywhere and in its dying, because in its dying its life spreads. Which is another way of saying “except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.”
When we read this, I told the kids how much I’d loved dandelions as a child growing up in the city. Those little things really could grow between the cracks of the sidewalk, smooshed up against buildings, anywhere. And while now they’re a menace to my garden, then they were the embodiment of hope and persistence. They were as tenacious as cockroaches and much more pleasant. I don’t mean to make it sound like I never saw green things because trees really do grow in Brooklyn and the other four boroughs, but flowers were few in the neighborhoods in which I grew up.
My boys love me and my little one especially took my words to heart.