It rained all summer long
and the few sunflowers 
not devoured by slugs 
turned their green faces in
towards our windows.
We wiped circles in the 
condensation just to see 
them beaming at us like 
expectant children waiting 
for a birthday party to begin. 

Don’t ask me to explain
why they are real and 
I'm too tired to care 
if you believe me
but we are ghost fodder. 
When it rains so much 
sedge grips your tongue
and words are waterlogged
as air through sodden lungs,
then apparitions come.

A vengeful spirit hacked 
them down with a toy sword
because it hurts to be left out 
while everyone is having fun.
They lay with broken necks 
and giant leaves palm up
the way a good photographer
might document the victims 
of a massacre or cyclone, 
seeing beauty in despair.

Afterwards it sat alone 
in a bare room with 
blackout curtains drawn,
pulling wilting petals 
from a severed head.
A mere slip of a thing
pale with dark circles
under huge eyes in the 
half-light, like a child 
cradling a broken doll.

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6 thoughts on “Sunflowers

  1. The only word that to me trips this up is “it” – second word of the last stanza. It grammatically is fine, as referring back to the vengeful monster (I assume) but it does give the reader pause. Otherwise one for the book.


    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

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