What is a Rose

March 27th, 2014

One scent of a Cinnamon Pink
recalls a time of innocence,
Honeysuckle on my Grandma’s barn
and a heavy odor of Gardenias at the prom.
Mama didn’t like Petunias. I wonder why?
Today I picked a rose and pricked my finger
on a thorn. My mind began to wander through my life,
to places I have been and lessons learned.

Wild strawberries grow where we walked
across wind swept hills that overlook the sea.
We shared our hopes and our ideals
and watched the waves crash on the rocks.

We made a home in San Jose. Ivy climbed the wall
and Iris grew along the garden paths.
Under Birch trees, there were Baby Tears.
The street was green with lawns kept velvet
by Saturday mowers. Their clatter competed
with laughter of babies sunning in the pens
and mothers chatting across the lines of clothes.
There was a Tulip tree beside a neighbor’s door.

Flowering Quince and Daphne grew
in his mother’s garden. Prim, proper and composed,
they were thorny and sentimental. After many years
I learned, too late, she came to love me.

In Zambia, Ndola has Flamboyants
and poverty beneath the flowering trees.
High in the Sierras, scarlet plants
thrive on the edge of melting snow.
There are Orchids in hospital rooms.
Fuschias grow by a seaside cottage,
weeds run rampant on the dunes.
Azaleas need an acid soil.

In the spring Wisteria floats on the breeze
to color a time, held together with tangled vines.
It’s true, one sees the world
as one wants to see it.

1999