That rose, so pendulant and yellow,
she glimpsed outside the kitchen window
wasn’t from the slip her mother sent her with
across the ocean, where the waves moved them forward
from the golden light of her wedding day, the dappled
light of her mother’s courtyard. How distant,
strange and overturned she felt
when that rose died of neglect.
Those old childhood indignities dissolved
and she felt what her mother had, how grieved
they’d be apart. So she set a new plant
to sink roots, to sprout canes, green
then darkening, splitting bark, surging,
overshadowing the arbor, but with flower.
Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 23, Issue 1.
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