one of my neighbors plants sunflowers every year in that little patch of soil, about one meter wide, that sits between the sidewalk and the street. the sunflowers grow from seed to almost 3 meters tall in one season. they make me smile. and they make me laugh. their spectacular height is so incongruous with the tiny patch of soil they occupy. for most of august they stand erect and proud in all their golden radiant glory. then, one day, they start to yield. to the wind. to gravity. to the elements. and it is on this day that i find them the most beautiful.