It is common in my walk through this world to find flowers–
Roses downcast and wilting on the ground,
And to take them in and make a place for them to be appreciated and adored.
The first I ever did this was Fleera,
Which I named such more out of aesthetic than science.
It was my third year in college
A flower well-formed which fell by my college dorm,
I found just prior to a walk in the woods with friends.
I held it and kept it out of sentiment and captivation
While one friend cast her petals to the wind
And the water carried it far away.
I brought mine home to a plastic bowl
Usually used for chicken noodle soup
And let it float there in all its stemless beauty.
The second was the journal in which I myself was plucked
And was called from my job at Walgreens as a service clerk
To return to my home, to float upon my parents’ waters.
I waited there uncertain of what to do,
Crying out to God, “I do not know why I am here!”
I wrote in my journal, Secor Fleeru
“How is it that I have come to be here?”
And my grandfather’s health began to decline
And I stopped my mouth.
Because I was not grafted into the branch of Walgreens
I could offer my fragrance by his bed close to his nose.
Which suffered from aspiration of the lungs and pneumonia.
And when he passed, the resplendence of my heart for him
I placed in song to be played in his ears by his bedside.
As he crossed the threshold into the gates of glory.
And so Secor Fleeru found a purpose for his pages.
The third happened today, almost three years to the day.
I mowed the lawn around my parents’ house,
In the back there was a Rose bush planted above our septic tank
It had flourished under my Graceful sister’s Joyous planting.
And the previous evening, my parents and I looked out and marvelled
At this one rose towering high above the others toward the heavens.
The next morning I found two smaller buds in a 6 inch ceramic vase
But these were not the Fleera.
The Fleera I found while I mowed the lawn.
I came upon it, recognizing it from the night before.
It lay downtrodden, it’s pedals browning on the ground.
I stayed my blade, and reached to clutch the stem.
It was not cut, but broken off,
By the fierceness of the weather and its weight.
I took it in, not counting the browning edges against it.
I gave it its own crystal cup.
I rested it up against the other smaller flowers.
I smelled it and relished its more poignant fragrance
The fragrance of a beauty bruised yet still shining
Because it is alive to be beautiful
And it is beautiful to be alive.
This mortal coil that burns out to crispy cinders.
The glow once found, now lost to rotting tinder.
A hollow wind blows through this dismal shrine
Where all that now is dark once housed divine.
The bulb crackles as its amber light-rays falter
The power lost to cravings man has altered.
To spin a web of safety and for feed.
In darkened corners where shade makes light bleed.
Thrice woe! The wail of counterfeits discovered.
The blindings of the ages are uncovered.
As sight is lit by just a little proof
To bid despair loose beams and drop the roof.
Unhinged from bolts the door made for a frame
It topples to the floor in open shame.
And creatures trample down this scratching post
Where guardianship now pays its careless cost.
Untruth: the absence of the deeds of good
On which a world so beautiful has stood
Makes slavery of freedom’s fruitful trees.
And grants no peace to those who lie at ease.
The “strinch” of wrenching strength to quench
The Hell-flames reek with death’s foul stench
The play of demon dragons doomed
To empty slither neath dust entombed.
Forgotten what must take place at the top
The center, the beginning and the stop.
What worthy light can cast its mighty glow
To fill this day with life I weep to know?
There once was a flower
With a terrible power
Its air reeked of death
On its poisonous breath
Its pedals were all thorns
Pointed outward like horns
Its colors were deep crimson
Tipped with blood of its victims
Its leaves were like stone
And it grew all alone
Its stem was a shell
Infested by Hell.
Oh just look at it! Hideous and horrid!
Who could but hate this monstrosity florid?
To the untrained eye, there was no good to see
But the Gardener knew there was life to set free
For he saw at its base,
A scar marking the place
A young seed gasped for air,
But it found no tender care
But dark creatures of dust
Made a home in its crust
It forgot why it arose
To what end life grows.
He approached the flower
With its terrible power
Smelling that stench
Making nostrils to pinch
And puffed out a whistle
That tottered the thistle
In the cool breeze it swayed
And death’s spell was allayed.
His eyes stared deep into the cold iris
Its thorns lashing out did not bemire his
Reflected in his tender watery eye
Was not the plant to slay, and die
But the living seed it bore within
For a crop of new flowers to begin
A cruel mark upon the garden’s name
Would be suffered for its life despite the pain.
With hands of great care, and words of good hope
He bathed the infested tears with lye and soap
So the insect onslaught might be reversed
And the plant might be as the seed planted first
Then leaves of stone, he scraped down to the vein
Where the lines still kept their chlorophyll stain
Slowly but surely it looked like a flower
Which held a significantly different power.
So its wound was soothed by tears that fell
From the eyes of Heaven to the scarring of Hell.