Not One I Want To Write But Know I Should

Tomorrow the day when florists deliver bouquets
yours absent of lilies your mother’s flower
She the determined woman      who parcelled
a three pound child in brown paper      & was gone
before end of your first year

Your father never bought a headstone     & I often
wonder why stiff blooms have power to poison
family after pollen falls           They blamed you
rather than focus on real cause or accept
just how much you were wanted

Years on I meet a woman with those same dark eyes
fierce & wild as you are. The photograph of her
in her new mother’s arms mirrors that sepia shot
Ann out on the back step        sleeves rolled up like a mother
who salvages a birdcage from a charred room

& I cannot       bring myself to order flowers
which eventually droop & lick            silent walls
Because in your last age of breath & spit
all the gentle words I must say           should be seen
not gushed      as panaceas      across a writer’s desk

©Natalia Spencer 2016

Cover image ©Marie Elkins 2012




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