This spring /Questa primavera

Safe Souls

This spring

While she uproots blooming irises from the backyard

Where they grow for no one

And brings them to the flower bed next to the road,

Gusts of wind and sun blind and lose her.

She digs with her fingers to feel the reality of soil

Not as harsh as the pain of letting go

Or as otherworldly as the bird’s nest which

She knocks over with her shoulder.

But she looks for that softness and warmth

That will be a sort of home – after death.

The father wobbles in his sandals towards the flowers

Thinking of the image of his heart on the monitor –

A muscle the size of his fist flickering with the weight of light.

She plants a row of irises on the side of house and he smiles

At fragrant violet and white petals unfolding:

‘In July we’ll have gladioli and next year

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