When the breeze came
it shook the magnolia tree
shedding husks of moonlight
slick under foot.
The waxy pedals left us weightless
while the wind slapped our cheeks red
pricked our skin to life
carrying the memory of you.
Above the cemetery
wedged between fingers of sky and stone
a banquet of gray hid behind glass
dulling my insides.
I picked a loose thread
from the blanket at my feet
remembering how your
teeth blossomed from your lips,
your eyes greened in sunlight,
before your cheeks hollowed
and your organs tired
turning your skin
shades of fallen plums.
You spoke of trees,
how to look for the fifth leaf
before pruning roses
to listen to the language of flowers
never dismissing me and my desert ways.
You gave me bouquets of peonies every spring.
I liked how some held their breath
while others opened in flight
picked from your garden
blushing pink and ivory
thick with nesting shades
leaving trails of ants on my wrists.
Though you favored daffodils
the unabashed color of first blooms,
first loves, first signs,
lifting you from the dregs of winter.
When I see them, I think of you
find you in your son’s eyes
hear you in his laugh.
I never thanked you for allowing
the fruit to fall under a carefully
tended tree, teaching us
we are all just gardens in need of care
someone willing to toil for hours
with hunched back and achy knees
fingers blackening with earth
sitting with patience
we thrive under
I must be offline for a stretch. Summer is here and I will be traveling with my family, enjoying the moments. Happy summer and writing to you all!