I pick one flower

a perfectly red hibiscus

place the plucked end in water

hoping it will drink and

stay with me for a while

stay alive though I know

the picking will shorten its time

has already changed its fate

from coquette to languid beauty.

Longevity is hardly the question now.

Perhaps there is no question.

There is only this looking, looking

this small remorse that I have interfered

this sigh for my clumsy human flesh

that steps on grasslings

leaves footprints in pink sand

in mud

picks a hibiscus

and only then remembers

that fate surprises us

picks us from our bush

our limb

so I place this perfect blossom

behind my ear

its bawdy pollen-laden stamen

observing me

from the corner of my eye:

here we go together

stepping out

to see what we can see.

One thought on “Hibiscus

  1. I have just discovered you and your words… I love your poetry, and, …I have a question:
    Is this the same Janet who wrote a poem in 1970 beginning with:
    “Could it be that I too am
    The daughter of the soil
    That when I dance
    The rain Iistens…”
    And did you also pick watermelon in Georgia in 1970?
    If so, I have been looking for you for 49 years.
    Please contact me:
    susan.heldfond@gmail .com


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