“I would have sent you flowers today,”
you sighed, as we watched
the autumn rain, both of us a distance away,
and I wished you
a sort of birthday of dreams.
Little then did it ever seem, when you
dragged your fingers across my skin,
that you also stroked to life
my sound-sleeping soul…until my window
dripped with molten gold and all
those, beautiful reminders.
Your voice on the line was the only remainder
of time we spent, long ago,
with a lily, on a hill;
when even with the best
will in the world, the edges of the flower still
rolled and curled, in the sepia of a memory past.
And you smiled down the wire and told me now
cast off any woeful penchant I may hold,
for beside the dying lily, you said,
on the horizon, you had seen a rose.
I asked you if the rose was new,
and you shook your head and said the bloom had always
been there: “it’s in your eyes,” you whispered,
“in your touch, how you move, your hair…and I wanted
so to show it to you…but I did not dare;
for whilst we grieved the loss of the lily,
it was at the rose I
could not help but stare.”